YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD. The commandment to love God with all one’s being is kept constantly before the Jewish people. It is recited daily in prayer; and, written on a small scroll, it is worn on their person and enshrined at the entrance to their homes. To observe this commandment our love must embrace the whole of creation, especially our fellow human beings made in God’s image.
A NEW COMMANDMENT:
In times of hardship, help us to forgive the ones who have hurt us. Give us the courage to admit if we are wrong and realize what we have done. And for the people who have hurt, give them the strength to forgive us.
In your name we pray,
Father, I have sinned ( Prodigal Son) By Fr. Eugene O’Reilly,C.SsR:
Please help me to have the courage to follow my dreams.
Help me with the determination to carry them out.
Give me the patience to deal with negativity,
the fortitude to accept defeat or failure.
Give me the strength to overcome my barriers.
Strengthen the hope that motivates me.
Give me the desire that makes my will strong.
I know you have given me what it takes to be a success;
please help me to use it to my best potential.
Help me to give what it takes to be my own success.
Chris Tomlin – Lord I Need You:
REFLECTIONS ON THE GOSPEL
TWIN COMMANDMENT OF LOVE
Scribes are usually hostile figures in the Gospels but the scribe who questions Jesus seems to be a genuine enquirer. His question – which commandment of the Torah is the ‘first’? – was an item of discussion in Jesus’ time.
Jesus first gives a conventional response, quoting the commandment recited by Jews each day in the Shema prayer (Deut 6:5). He then goes further, laying alongside the ‘first’ commandment a ‘second’ taken from Lev 19:18: ‘to love one’s neighbour as oneself’. The combination seems to have been something distinctive of Jesus – though Jewish parallels are not lacking from a later period.
Loving one’s neighbour ‘as oneself’ may not seem all that demanding. One only has to put the neighbour’s interests on an equal level with one’s own, implying by the same token a healthy valuing of oneself.
But on closer inspection it is really asking an act of the imagination in high degree. It requires asking myself: ‘What do I really want from another person? – understanding, tolerance, respect, loyalty, compassion?’ – then to ensure that all my actions in regard to that person enact, rather than contradict, such qualities.
There is an attractive moment of mutual affirmation at the end. The Jewish legal expert acknowledge that Jesus’ teaching conforms to the claim of Israel’s prophets that the rituals of sacrifice, such as those practised in the Temple, are worthless unless accompanied by justice and love. This positions the scribe ‘not far from the kingdom of God’ in the sense that the onset of the kingdom is rendering such rituals obsolete through the twin commandment of love.
Brendan Byrne, SJ
UBI CARITAS ET AMOR – Morten Lauridsen:
Where Charity And Love Are: