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Posts Tagged ‘God’s message’


Ezekiel 13:22-23: Against the Prophets of Peace – Part V

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Deception, lies, conspiracies, delusions, fantasies. Truth, fidelity, steadfastness,
openness, love. The forces of light and darkness are with us always. Ezekiel
warns those who yearn for peace that the journey will not be simple. Jesus
reminds us daily that The Way is strewn with obstacles and traps. Today, as we
prepare to enter the holiest of weeks in the liturgical year, we reflect on the
invitation that lies open to us, waiting for our willing hands to join in the passage
from fear to hope, from gloom to joy.  

“‘Because you’ve confounded and confused good people, unsuspecting and innocent people, with your lies, and because you’ve made it easy for others to persist in evil so that it wouldn’t even dawn on them to turn to me so I could save them, as of now you’re
finished. No more delusion-mongering from you, no more sermonic lies. I’m going
to rescue my people from your clutches. And you’ll realize that I am God.’”

And so, we ask . . .

Are we willing to begin a journey we know will be difficult? Can we discern
the hand of Christ that stretches out to greet us? If we have already begun
this journey, can we gather the energy and the will to again join the caravan
of faithful that go up to Jerusalem each year? Are we ready for rescue? Do we
realize that God is God, the creator and lover of each of us?

Tomorrow, Hosanna and Palm Sunday.


Image from: https://www.theologyofbusiness.com/cease-striving-reasons-to-rest-on-the-sabbath/path-to-the-light/

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Ezekiel 13:13-16: Against the Prophets of Peace – Part IV

Friday, April 8, 2022

Many times, in our Noontime journey, we have reflected on the harshness of the words of Ezekiel’s Old Testament God and we have seen how Jesus fulfills the prophecy of doom. Rather than take advantage of those who suffer, Jesus walks among the sick and wounded to heal and cure. Jesus dines with sinners not to take advantage of good food and wine but to listen endlessly and to question wisely. Jesus takes on the sins of all to offer each of us the incomparable gift of sister and brotherhood. Finding us amid the rubble of our deconstructed walls that we worked so hard to whitewash and purify, Jesus takes us to himself. Jesus restores, rectifies, and reconstitutes. And then Jesus invites us to join him and to do the same.

 

“And that’s exactly what will happen. I, God, the Master, say so: ‘I’ll let the hurricane of my wrath loose, a torrent of my hailstone-anger. I’ll make that wall you’ve slapped with whitewash collapse. I’ll level it to the ground so that only the foundation stones will be left. And in the ruin you’ll all die. You’ll realize then that I am God. ‘I’ll dump my wrath on that wall, all of it, and on those who plastered it with whitewash. I will say to them, There is no wall, and those who did such a good job of whitewashing it wasted their time, those prophets of Israel who preached to Jerusalem and announced all their visions telling us things were just fine when they weren’t at all fine. Decree of God, the Master.’

And so, we ask . . .

Am I willing to take hold of the hand Jesus offers? Will I walk away from the wreckage of my walls? Will I join others with whom I had differences and perhaps swore to never enjoin? Do I give to Christ all that I have gathered? All I have stored up? All I have relied upon? Do I put away my fears and anger to place all my trust in God?

Tomorrow, rescue.


Image from: https://www.smartshelterfoundation.org/smart-shelter-techniques/21-improving-building-quality/

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Ezekiel 13:10-12: Against the Prophets of Peace – Part III

Thursday, April 7, 2022

We have built walls and also torn down barriers. We have jumped on band wagons and also stood alone on firm principle. We have allowed ourselves to join group think and also waded through the facile misconceptions and alluring conspiracies. Today we hear Ezekiel call out to us, if might only listen and heed.

“The fact is that they’ve lied to my people. They’ve said, ‘No problem; everything’s just fine,’ when things are not at all fine. When people build a wall, they’re right behind them slapping on whitewash. Tell those who are slapping on the whitewash, ‘When a torrent of rain comes and the hailstones crash down and the hurricane sweeps in and the wall collapses, what’s the good of the whitewash that you slapped on so liberally, making it look so good?’

And so, we ask . . .

When have we gleefully slapped wide swipes of whitewash on the faces of truth? Why have we ignored truths are self-evident and preached lies that are outlandish? How have we joined those who rise up against prophets and when have we fought back against blatant ignorance and fear? These are all difficult questions. These are all beautiful opportunities to rise in the incense of our sacrifice for Christ.

Tomorrow, the hurricane. 


Image from: https://resin-expert.com/en/guide/how-to-whitewash-brick 

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Ezekiel 13:7-9: Against the Prophets of Peace – Part II

Wednesday, April 6, 2022 Yesterday we paused to question the delusions we live by and the realities we try to enact as we consume the deluge of information that overwhelms us. Our daily experience is somehow different each day and somehow horribly the same. We might give ourselves over to despair that strains against Ezekiel’s hope. We might rise on the incense that rises from the ashes of our dreams. We might join Christ in the resurrection of the truth we know exists. These choice between foolish nonsense and solid truth is open to us. 

“Haven’t you fantasized sheer nonsense? Aren’t your sermons tissues of lies, saying ‘God says . . .’ when I’ve done nothing of the kind? Therefore—and this is the Message of God, the Master, remember—I’m dead set against prophets who substitute illusions for visions and use sermons to tell lies. I’m going to ban them from the council of my people, remove them from membership in Israel, and outlaw them from the land of Israel. Then you’ll realize that I am God, the Master.

Ezekiel’s words are harsh here. They are difficult to put into focus when we reflect on the generous love of Christ and yet, the severity of the prophet’s words are matched – and even overcome – by God’s enormous, generous love. 

And so, we ask ourselves . . . 

Do we substitute our own illusions created in fear for God’s visions freely given in love? When do we coddle and cajole? When do we cower even as we wield fear and exclude? When do we stand firm as we strive to include? 

Tomorrow, whitewashed walls. 


To understand more about our delusions, click on the image or visit: https://ridgeviewhospital.net/delusions-vs-hallucinations/

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Ezekiel 13:1-6: Against the Prophets of Peace – Part I

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

We continue to monitor news feeds to keep track of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. We keep a watchful eye on data that track the Covid pandemic. We keep in touch with family and friends as we prepare for the coming celebration of Easter and rebirth. We spend time with colleagues as we discuss Supreme Court nominations and local, state, national, and international politics. We are perhaps overwhelmed with information that cries out for our reflection and consideration at the same as we leave behind the innocents who suffer in a dozen hot spots of the world. We are perhaps exhausted from praying and straining; yet still we persist as we share our concerns and hopes, sorrows and joys. Today we begin a study of Ezekiel 13, we reflect on whether we stand for or against the prophets of peace.

Today’s citation is from THE MESSAGE version.

God’s Message came to me: “Son of man, preach against the prophets of Israel who are making things up out of their own heads and calling it ‘prophesying.’ Preach to them the real thing. Tell them, ‘Listen to God’s Message!’ God, the Master, pronounces doom on the empty-headed prophets who do their own thing and know nothing of what’s going on! Your prophets, Israel, are like jackals scavenging through the ruins. They haven’t lifted a finger to repair the defenses of the city and have risked nothing to help Israel stand on God’s Day of Judgment. All they do is fantasize comforting illusions and preach lying sermons. They say ‘God says ... when God hasn’t so much as breathed in their direction. And yet they stand around thinking that something they said is going to happen.

And so we ask ourselves . . . 

When and why do we fantasize? What are our illusions and realities? What sermons do we preach with the actions of our daily lives? Where do we stand? With or against the prophets of peace? 

Tomorrow, fantasizing nonsense. 


To learn more about the International Day of Peace, the 21st of September each year, click on the image or visit: https://internationaldayofpeace.org/

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Friday, March 26, 2021

Museum of Biblical Art, NY: The Return of the Prodigal Son - Artist unknown

Museum of Biblical Art, NY: The Return of the Prodigal Son – Artist unknown

Amos 9:8-15

Messianic Perspective

Amos brings us God’s Words; he shows us the world’s Woes; he paints for us his intense Visions. If we give in to despair we miss God’s message. If we walk away in pride we miss God’s promise. If we become impatient or irritable we miss God’s grace. If we practice greed we miss feeling God’s love. Today we have the opportunity to count ourselves among the pebbles God sifts from the debris of our selfishness. We are given another chance to rise up out of the ashes of our willfulness.  We are given another season to mend breaches and to rebuild foundations on the days of old.

Jesus tells us this story of the lost son who returns home to his father after having squandered all his father had given to him. So [the son] got up and went to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son”. But the father said to his servants, “Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again, he lost and now is found”.  So they began to celebrate. (Luke 15:20-24)

Let us also return to the creator who is running toward us with open arms, who is waiting for our word to begin the celebration.


For an interesting article from the National Catholic Reporter in June 2011, on how theologians re-visit the famous parable of the forgiving father,, and how we may be called to forgive church structures, click on the image above or go to: http://ncronline.org/news/peace-justice/theologians-revisit-prodigal-son 

For more on the image of God’s Sieve, go to the Mini-Noontime posted on September 26, 2013 at: https://thenoontimes.com/2020/09/23/the-sieve/ 

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