Monday November 13, 2023

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


“Never underestimate the importance of your faith, even it if seems too small. Trust the truth.”


Good News Reflection for:

Monday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time
Memorial of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, virgin
November 13, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Lord Jesus, I have been hurt so many times, and so many times I have tried to forgive. I need Your grace, Lord, because I just can’t do it alone. Increase my faith! I give You my desire to forgive; please send Your Spirit to help me forgive. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:
gnm.org/SaintQuotes/

Today’s Readings:

Wisdom 1:1-7
Ps 139: (24b) 1b-10
Luke 17:1-6
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/111323.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/daily-mass-reading-podcast-november-13-2023

The potential of the mustard seed

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

Today’s Gospel reading seems to be a smattering of unrelated quips by Jesus. It’s as if he were writing bumper stickers or pithy sayings for billboards in front of churches.

However, when Luke wrote this Gospel, he had a deliberate reason for putting these pearls of holy wisdom here, one right after the other. Jesus was challenging his followers with the implied question: Do you have true faith? Let us examine our answers.

If we have true faith in Jesus, we’re enthralled by who he really is — we’re excited, amazed and fascinated. Because of this, we focus on his every word, so much so that we grow in our understanding of the truth and we become better at living the truth. We becoming more and more unwilling to sin or cause a scandal. And we become less and less likely to accidentally cause a scandal.

If we have true faith in Jesus, we notice how readily he forgives everyone, no matter what they’ve done, and that he has compassion for their regret, joy for their desire to change, and patience for any continued stumbling. We also realize that he knows each sinner’s heart far better than we do, and so we quit judging them, we quit holding grudges, and we freely choose to be merciful to them.

If we have true faith in Jesus, we don’t have to have a big faith to succeed spiritually or to get our prayers answered. Even beginners — newly enlivened Christians who’ve barely started the journey of spiritual discovery — have enough faith to cast trees into the sea. Really? How? Well, remember that faith is a gift of the Holy Spirit. We have God’s own faith within us! That’s more than enough.

True faith is only a matter of remaining true to the faith. Instead of behaving as if the Holy Spirit hasn’t made us any different from people who live without God, our behavior is based on what Jesus taught and did and what his Spirit empowers us to do. And when we fail at that, we run to the Sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist for healing, purification, and renewed strength.

Jesus isn’t asking us to have enormous faith in him, just real faith. The value of a mustard seed is in its potential to grow — to become more than itself — when properly nourished. You already have the potential for casting trees into the sea — for casting obstacles far from where they can interfere with what God wants for you — so now it’s just a matter of feeding your faith growth.

Never underestimate the importance of your faith, even it if seems too small. Trust the truth. Your holiness will grow!

For more on this, use our WordByte called: “What Motivates You During Tough Times?” @ https://wordbytes.org/faith/motivates-in-tough-times/.

2023 by Terry A. Modica

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