Monday August 1, 2022

daily reflections

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica

DISCOVER TODAY: We have to know for sure what the truth is. We can’t stand firm if we’re shaky.

Good News Reflection for:

Monday of the 18th Week of Ordinary Time
Memorial of Saint Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
August 1, 2022

Today’s Prayer:

Forgive me, Lord, for all those times when I hid myself to avoid defending the Truth. May Your Holy Spirit purify me and strengthen me for my mission. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:

Today’s Readings:

Jeremiah 28:1-17
Ps 119:29,43,79,80,95,102 (with 68b)
Matthew 14:22-36
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:

How steady is your stand on the truth?

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

Are you a chameleon? We all have a bit of the lizard in us! A chameleon changes colors according to whatever it’s standing on. It blends in for the sake of self-preservation.

We, too, prefer to blend into our surroundings in order to protect ourselves. We hide from potential ridicule and persecution. When we’re standing in church, we like to look pious. When we’re surrounded by faith-filled Christians, we feel free to let our faith-colors show. But when we’re mingling with non-believers, we change. We often look and sound like they do.

How worldly are our choice of words, our moods, and our ways of coping with stress? Are we different enough from our surroundings that others see there’s a benefit to being a Christian? Can anyone believe that our faith has improved our lives?

It’s difficult to be consistent in our faith, because whenever we look different (whenever we take an unpopular moral stand, for example), we get rejected by those who are not like us. But when we blend in with them, is it really worthwhile? If Jesus were to walk into the room while we’re mingling with them, would he recognize us as one of his friends? Consider that on this Monday of the 18th Week of Ordinary Time.

In today’s first reading, the prophet Hananiah was a chameleon. He protected himself by telling the people what they wanted to hear. Next to him, Jeremiah looked very different. We have to ask ourselves, “Am I more like Hananiah or Jeremiah?” Every time we put our selfish desire for an easy life ahead of the desire to serve God, we reject God and mislead others as they continue to live in the lies that they want to believe.

However, before we can be like Jeremiah, we have to know for sure what the truth is. We can’t stand firm if we’re shaky. There’s no excuse for uncertainty, because the Catechism and other Church writings are all available online, and these are all based on and footnoted with scripture.

Do you know why the Church teaches that artificial birth control works against love? Can you stand up for the reasons why marriage is designed to be a covenant only between one man and one woman, and why they should be sacramental, and why annulments are valuable? Are you ready to explain why only men are called to be priests and why priests are called to be servants of the laity, and why lay men and women are called to their own leader-servant roles in the Church?

Oh my! No wonder we have a hard time standing firm! We understand so little. We’re starving in the midst of a gourmet banquet.

Do we truly mean what we proclaim in our Responsorial Psalm today: “Teach me your laws, O Lord.” Yes! I have much more to learn.

And: “Sinners wait to destroy me, but I pay heed to your decrees.” Help me to stand firm, O God! Amen.

Thank you for reflecting with us on this Monday of the 18th Week of Ordinary Time!

Reflect further on this with our WordByte called: “‘Be not afraid’ to speak the truth” @

© 2022 by Terry A. Modica

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