Bruised, Beaten, Left for Dead but not Defeated

May 16, 2017 – Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter

If we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Christ. Alleluia!

Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (mpoletunow@malvernretreat.com)

Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (14:19-28)

In those days, some Jews from Antioch and Iconium
arrived and won over the crowds.
They stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city,
supposing that he was dead.
But when the disciples gathered around him,
he got up and entered the city.
On the following day he left with Barnabas for Derbe.

After they had proclaimed the good news to that city
and made a considerable number of disciples,
they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch.
They strengthened the spirits of the disciples
and exhorted them to persevere in the faith, saying,
“It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships
to enter the Kingdom of God.”

They appointed presbyters for them in each Church and,
with prayer and fasting, commended them to the Lord
in whom they had put their faith.
Then they traveled through Pisidia and reached Pamphylia.
After proclaiming the word at Perga they went down to Attalia.
From there they sailed to Antioch,
where they had been commended to the grace of God
for the work they had now accomplished.
And when they arrived, they called the Church together
and reported what God had done with them
and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles.

Then they spent no little time with the disciples.
 

Reflect: They stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing that he was dead. It isn’t easy being a disciple. In this scripture today, we see Paul bruised, beaten, left for dead, but not discouraged. In today’s gospel reading (John 14:27-31), Jesus says, “Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” He knows the trials and challenges of proclaiming the Kingdom of God. Therefore, he is clear: “Peace I leave you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you.” That peace was manifest by Paul, Barnabas and the other disciples. They are attacked from every side, yet they find the strength and conviction to continue preaching the Good News, bringing new followers to Christ and encouraging the Church throughout the world. Sometimes we can be perplexed by the happenings and occurrences in our own lives. We try our very best to live the life of the gospel and to be faithful to Christ, yet we can feel beat up, defeated, and as if the world, as we know it, is collapsing in our midst. Jesus invites us to be at peace; to trust him; to believe that his grace, his love, his mercy will give us the strength to carry on and to give witness to him in the world.

Questions: How have I felt bruised, beat up or defeated lately? Did I consider turning over that experience to Christ and asking for his peace? How might Jesus be inviting me to be strengthened through suffering and to find his peace; not as the world gives it? How might he want to use me to make him known to others in the midst of my own sufferings?

Pray: Loving God, I rejoice in your Resurrection and your limitless love for me won on the cross. Help me to be steadfast in faith and hope, and never doubt the promises you make to those who love you and listen to your voice.  I pray this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you, says the Lord.  Alleluia!

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

ENCOUNTERING THE DIVINE PHYSICIAN (Gospel of Luke 5: 17-26)

Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat.  See our website for details:  MalvernRetreat.com

COMPANIONS ON THE JOURNEY Join us every Tuesday from 5 pm – 6 pm for this new and exciting radio broadcast from Malvern Retreat House on Radio Maria USA. Download the app for Radio Maria or go to the internet at http://www.radiomaria.us/

Don’t miss Family Fest on June 11, 2017 from 1PM-6PM

Help us spread the word!

Comments are closed.