Every day, we need to go to our quiet place...

Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:

May 20, A.D. 2008

Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:

James 4:1-10
Psalm 55:7-8, 9-10a, 10b-11a, 23
Mark 9:30-37

A reflection on today's Scripture:

Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me. . . .

There are so many ways to read this passage, and particularly this statement, it's hard to know where to begin. But let's jump in.

What does it mean to receive a child? Well, for one thing, we receive a child when we or our spouse gives birth. When this happens, we receive Jesus. Because Jesus dwells within each of us, when we open our homes to children, we open them to a new presence, a new manifestation, a new sense of Jesus.

Children have open hearts and open eyes. They see in ways that we have forgotten. They say things that remind us of what it means to be close to God. They've not yet had that sense of His immediate presence dulled or stripped away. My son was recently planning his birthday party guest list and a name came up that surprised us. The person had been more than mean and bullying—he'd been a horror. We asked why in the world he would think about inviting such a person and his immediate response to us was, "What about 'bless those who persecute you'?" So it is with a child.

When we take a child into our hearts and lives, we let down the barriers a little. We welcome a new little person, but we also allow more of Jesus to shine through and to be present to us.

There are many other ways to understand this line that Jesus spoke. Like all of scripture, its richness grows as we contemplate it.

- JuandelaCruz |
email: sriddle415 (at) yahoo (dot) com

Tuesday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

St. Bernardine of Siena, priest

Lives of the saints:

Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:


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