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Fasting for the kingdom of God

Deut 7:9: The Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands.
  Let us Pray ...
Heavenly Father, thank you for loving us so sacrificially and steadfastly. Thank you for the way you preserved your promises to the Israelites and brought your Son just as you promised. We trust your promise to send him back to bring us home to you. Please receive the deeds and words of this day as we thanks to you for your covenant of love with us and those who we love. In the name of Infant Jesus, your gift of love, we pray. Amen.
  Today's Readings ... (March 11, 2011)
Friday After Ash Wednesday
First Reading:  Isaiah 58:1-9a
Responsorial Psalm:  Psalm 51:3-4,5-6,ab,18-19
Gospel:  Matthew 9:14-15
  Meditation on Today's Gospel: (Matthew 9:14-15)
Today’s Gospel narrating about Fasting. A very common question always arises, what kind of fasting is pleasing to God? Fasting can be done for a diversity of reasons – to gain freedom from some bad practice, addiction, or vice, to share in the suffering of those who go exclusive of, or to grow in our desire for God and for the things of heaven. Are we hungry for God? Hungering for God and fasting for his realm go hand in hand. When questioned why he and his disciples did not fast Jesus used the bright picture of a wedding party. In Jesus' time the newly marriage celebrated their honeymoon at home for a entire week with all the guests! This was a time of huge feasting and celebrating. Jesus summits to himself as the bridegroom and his disciples as the bridegroom's friends. He alludes to the information that God takes delight in his people as a groom delights in his bride. To be in God's presence is clean delight and contentment. But Jesus also remind his supporters that there is a time for fasting and for overwhelming oneself in training for the coming of God's kingdom and for the come back of the Messianic King. The Lord's disciples have to also bear the cross of suffering and purification. For the disciple there is both a time for triumph in the Lord's presence and celebrating his goodness and a time for seeking the Lord with humbleness, fasting, and mourning for sin. If we hunger for the Lord, he will not dissatisfy us. His grace draws us to his throne of compassion and favor. Do we seek the Lord with confident trust and permit his Holy Spirit to transform our life with his power and grace?
(Sunday Homilies - Sermon by Fr Kuriakose)


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