Prayer: O Jesus, your goodness is everywhere.
Imagination: (Picture Jesus with his disciples, healing the crowds).
The advent gospels are filled with Jesus’ compassion and power. That compassion brings forth physical healings and makes Jesus a shepherd to the poor. Unable to do all by himself, he shares his powers with the twelve.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
When Jesus saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were prostrate from exhaustion, like sheep without a shepherd. He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great but the laborers are few. Pray, therefore, that the Lord of the harvest would send laborers into his harvest.”
Calling his twelve disciples together, he gave them power to cast out unclean spirits and to heal all kinds of sickness and disease. He gave these instructions, “Do not go to pagan territory and do not enter a Samaritan town. Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, make the announcement, “The reign of God is at hand”. Cure the sick. Raise the dead. Heal the lepers. Expel demons. The gift you have received, give as a gift.”
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- Jesus is indefatigable. He is everywhere – towns, villages, synagogues and street corners. He does everything. He heals, raises from the dead, and expels demons.
- The gospel reveals his inner thoughts. He is filled with compassion because the people are worn out.
- He will be their shepherd, taking up a difficult and thankless task.
- His heart conceives a new plan. He will multiply this work by sharing his powers with the faithful apostles.
- Jesus loves Israel, his people. The disciples must go there first. Time is limited.
- They must preach his message that the Kingdom of God is at hand. This alone prepares for his coming.
- He gives them the Kingdom’s powers – to heal and expel demons.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- Jesus, you are everywhere. You do all things. You seek me out. You speak in my heart.
- You reveal your heart. You are filled with compassion. Every action is for my benefit.
- You see me worn out. You see me burdened. “ I will make you my sheep”, you say.
- You have sent others for me. You have given me a Church to preach your Kingdom and a Eucharistic table to nourish me.
- You love your people. You love those who are baptized and believe in you.
- Your gifts are freely given and freely received. Your abundance is everywhere.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
- I will be aware that Jesus is everywhere.
- I will think of his great love for me.
Thought for the Day: (To recall your meditation)
Make the announcement, “The reign of God is at hand.”