Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

Social Media Lives

First Reading
Amos 6:1A, 4-7

Thus says the LORD the God of hosts:
Woe to the complacent in Zion!
Lying upon beds of ivory,
stretched comfortably on their couches,
they eat lambs taken from the flock,
and calves from the stall!
Improvising to the music of the harp,
like David, they devise their own accompaniment.
They drink wine from bowls
and anoint themselves with the best oils;
yet they are not made ill by the collapse of Joseph!
Therefore, now they shall be the first to go into exile,
and their wanton revelry shall be done away with.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 146:7, 8-9, 9-10
R. (1b) Praise the Lord, my soul!
R. Alleluia.

Blessed he who keeps faith forever,
secures justice for the oppressed,
gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets captives free.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
R. Alleluia.

The LORD gives sight to the blind;
the LORD raises up those who were bowed down.
The LORD loves the just;
the LORD protects strangers.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
R. Alleluia.

The fatherless and the widow he sustains,
but the way of the wicked he thwarts.
The LORD shall reign forever;
your God, O Zion, through all generations. Alleluia.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
R. Alleluia.

Second Reading
1 Timothy 6:11-16

But you, man of God, pursue righteousness,
devotion, faith, love, patience, and gentleness.
Compete well for the faith.
Lay hold of eternal life, to which you were called
when you made the noble confession in the presence of many witnesses.
I charge you before God, who gives life to all things,
and before Christ Jesus,
who gave testimony under Pontius Pilate for the noble confession,
to keep the commandment without stain or reproach
until the appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ
that the blessed and only ruler
will make manifest at the proper time,
the King of kings and Lord of lords,
who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light,
and whom no human being has seen or can see.
To him be honor and eternal power. Amen.

Luke 16:19-31

Jesus said to the Pharisees:
“There was a rich man who dressed in purple garments and fine linen
and dined sumptuously each day.
And lying at his door was a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores,
who would gladly have eaten his fill of the scraps
that fell from the rich man’s table.
Dogs even used to come and lick his sores.
When the poor man died,
he was carried away by angels to the bosom of Abraham.
The rich man also died and was buried,
and from the netherworld, where he was in torment,
he raised his eyes and saw Abraham far off
and Lazarus at his side.
And he cried out, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me.
Send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue,
for I am suffering torment in these flames.’
Abraham replied,
‘My child, remember that you received
what was good during your lifetime
while Lazarus likewise received what was bad;
but now he is comforted here, whereas you are tormented.
Moreover, between us and you a great chasm is established
to prevent anyone from crossing who might wish to go
from our side to yours or from your side to ours.’
He said, ‘Then I beg you, father,
send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers,
so that he may warn them,
lest they too come to this place of torment.’
But Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets.
Let them listen to them.’
He said, ‘Oh no, father Abraham,
but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’
Then Abraham said, ‘If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets,
neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.'”


“… My child, remember that you received what was good during your lifetime…” (Luke 16:25)

One of the easiest and fastest ways I can ruin my day is through envy. Scrolling through my social media feed and not realizing I’ve been comparing myself to people who seem to have perfect lives online. These people who have complete families, people who have the perfect romantic stories, people who bought everything I’ve been wanting to have but can’t afford. But here I am, sitting there doing nothing, thinking why can’t I have a good life like them.

It sucks. Makes me think I have a bad life. But do I really? Most of the time, if not every time, envy is caused by apathy towards others.

In today’s gospel, God is reminding us that being blessed comes with a responsibility. If you are reading this right now, it means you have a phone or a computer. You are blessed compared to a lot of people living today. And because we are blessed, we have a great capacity to bless others. Most especially the less fortunate. Want to know how blessed you are? Be generous. If you can bless, then it means you are blessed. If you are blessed, then you have all the reasons to be grateful. So today, give blessings to those who need it and give thanks to the source of these blessings.

Thank you Lord for I am blessed and highly favored. Help me to be generous today. Amen.



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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

The App Store

First Reading
Wisdom 9:13-18B

Who can know God’s counsel,
or who can conceive what the LORD intends?
For the deliberations of mortals are timid,
and unsure are our plans.
For the corruptible body burdens the soul
and the earthen shelter weighs down the mind that has many concerns.
And scarce do we guess the things on earth,
and what is within our grasp we find with difficulty;
but when things are in heaven, who can search them out?
Or who ever knew your counsel, except you had given wisdom
and sent your holy spirit from on high?
And thus were the paths of those on earth made straight.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 90:3-4, 5-6, 12-13, 14 AND 17
R. (1) In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge.

You turn man back to dust,
saying, “Return, O children of men.”
For a thousand years in your sight
are as yesterday, now that it is past,
or as a watch of the night.
R. In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge.
You make an end of them in their sleep;
the next morning they are like the changing grass,
Which at dawn springs up anew,
but by evening wilts and fades.
R. In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge.
Teach us to number our days aright,
that we may gain wisdom of heart.
Return, O LORD! How long?
Have pity on your servants!
R. In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge.
Fill us at daybreak with your kindness,
that we may shout for joy and gladness all our days.
And may the gracious care of the LORD our God be ours;
prosper the work of our hands for us!
Prosper the work of our hands!
R. In every age, O Lord, you have been our refuge.

Second Reading
Philemon 9-10, 12-17

I, Paul, an old man,
and now also a prisoner for Christ Jesus,
urge you on behalf of my child Onesimus,
whose father I have become in my imprisonment;
I am sending him, that is, my own heart, back to you.
I should have liked to retain him for myself,
so that he might serve me on your behalf
in my imprisonment for the gospel,
but I did not want to do anything without your consent,
so that the good you do might not be forced but voluntary.
Perhaps this is why he was away from you for a while,
that you might have him back forever,
no longer as a slave
but more than a slave, a brother,
beloved especially to me, but even more so to you,
as a man and in the Lord.
So if you regard me as a partner, welcome him as you would me.

Luke 14:25-33

Great crowds were traveling with Jesus,
and he turned and addressed them,
“If anyone comes to me without hating his father and mother,
wife and children, brothers and sisters,
and even his own life,
he cannot be my disciple.
Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me
cannot be my disciple.
Which of you wishing to construct a tower
does not first sit down and calculate the cost
to see if there is enough for its completion?
Otherwise, after laying the foundation
and finding himself unable to finish the work
the onlookers should laugh at him and say,
‘This one began to build but did not have the resources to finish.’
Or what king marching into battle would not first sit down
and decide whether with ten thousand troops
he can successfully oppose another king
advancing upon him with twenty thousand troops?
But if not, while he is still far away,
he will send a delegation to ask for peace terms.
In the same way,
anyone of you who does not renounce all his possessions
cannot be my disciple.”

app store.jpg

“In the same way, everyone of you who does not renounce all his possessions cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:33)

Imagine for a second that your life is a smartphone with only 8GB of storage. Like any person with a phone, the first thing you’ll do is to browse the app store and download the apps and games that you think are cool!

After downloading a lot of apps, you check your storage and you find out that there is probably a little bit of space for one more app. You decide to look again at the app store. You stumble upon an app called “Following Jesus” You check the reviews and ratings, but you realize that there are more reviews and ratings than actual downloads. You click download app anyway, but you are immediately alerted because the app takes up 8gb of storage–exactly the storage your phone has! To download it, you have to delete all your apps so you can download this one.

And that is exactly what Jesus is telling us today! It can be so challenging to place Jesus in our hearts. We think that squeezing Jesus into our lives will work, but you can never really experience Him if He is not at the center of everything. We think that following Jesus is a one-time Church thing, but it is not! Your life should be bootstrapped to Jesus.

Your school, your work, your love life; offer it to Jesus. Put Him above all these things.

Today’s Gospel reminds us of the cost of following Him. Putting God first has different meanings for a lot of people, but it can only mean one thing–it should mean one thing and that is, to put God first means to put yourself last. His will, not yours.

Will you be like the others who just put reviews and ratings, people who say a lot of things about God, but never really put Him at the center of their lives? Or will you let Jesus take over your heart today?

Jesus, invade my heart. Make it your home and make me your disciple. Amen.



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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

Christmas Countdown

First Reading
2 SM 7:1-5, 8B-12, 14A, 16

When King David was settled in his palace,
and the LORD had given him rest from his enemies on every side,
he said to Nathan the prophet,
“Here I am living in a house of cedar,
while the ark of God dwells in a tent!”
Nathan answered the king,
“Go, do whatever you have in mind,
for the LORD is with you.”
But that night the LORD spoke to Nathan and said:
“Go, tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the LORD:
Should you build me a house to dwell in?

“‘It was I who took you from the pasture
and from the care of the flock
to be commander of my people Israel.
I have been with you wherever you went,
and I have destroyed all your enemies before you.
And I will make you famous like the great ones of the earth.
I will fix a place for my people Israel;
I will plant them so that they may dwell in their place
without further disturbance.
Neither shall the wicked continue to afflict them as they did of old,
since the time I first appointed judges over my people Israel.
I will give you rest from all your enemies.
The LORD also reveals to you
that he will establish a house for you.
And when your time comes and you rest with your ancestors,
I will raise up your heir after you, sprung from your loins,
and I will make his Kingdom firm.
I will be a father to him,
and he shall be a son to me.
Your house and your Kingdom shall endure forever before me;
your throne shall stand firm forever.’”

Responsorial Psalm
PS 89:2-3, 4-5, 27 AND 29
R. (2) For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

The favors of the LORD I will sing forever;
through all generations my mouth shall proclaim your faithfulness.
For you have said, “My kindness is established forever”;
in heaven you have confirmed your faithfulness.
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.
“I have made a covenant with my chosen one,
I have sworn to David my servant:
Forever will I confirm your posterity
and establish your throne for all generations.”
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.
“He shall say of me, ‘You are my father,
my God, the rock, my savior.’
Forever I will maintain my kindness toward him,
and my covenant with him stands firm.”
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

LK 1:67-79

Zechariah his father, filled with the Holy Spirit, prophesied, saying:

“Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
for he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty Savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hand of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.
You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.”


“To give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace.”” (Luke 1:79)

A few hours from now, the whole world will be celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Maybe as you are reading this, your family’s preparing the decorations, the food, the gifts, the clothes to wear for later. But let us face the fact. In some way, there are people out there who are not eager for Christmas. For them, it’s a reminder of their loneliness, or even a reminder of what was theirs and now, something that was taken away. There will be people tonight who will sleep off their sorrow, anger, bitterness. The people who are deprived of hope, peace, love, and joy.

Friends, God’s grace is so abundant that it overflows. The victory has been won when Jesus came into this world two thousand years ago. But the victory is only given when we spread His spirit through love. In this day of celebration, let us bring peace by loving, acknowledging and forgiving the people around us. God calls us today to share Jesus’ light to the world. Let us allow the Jesus in us to love. Give love a chance to conquer evil today. Peace is not to have, but to be. So today, we invite you to join us to be the peace and make this Christmas the best. We hope you are up for the challenge! Let’s prepare for the birth of Jesus.

The BLD Youth Ministry wishes you a Merry Christmas! JIMLY! May God be with you!

Father God, thank you for giving me Jesus. I will be spread the real spirit of Christmas today by giving love to everyone I encounter today. Thank you! Happy Birthday, Jesus.


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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

Case Study

First Reading
IS 40:25-31

To whom can you liken me as an equal?
says the Holy One.
Lift up your eyes on high
and see who has created these things:
He leads out their army and numbers them,
calling them all by name.
By his great might and the strength of his power
not one of them is missing!
Why, O Jacob, do you say,
and declare, O Israel,
“My way is hidden from the LORD,
and my right is disregarded by my God”?

Do you not know
or have you not heard?
The LORD is the eternal God,
creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint nor grow weary,
and his knowledge is beyond scrutiny.
He gives strength to the fainting;
for the weak he makes vigor abound.
Though young men faint and grow weary,
and youths stagger and fall,
They that hope in the LORD will renew their strength,
they will soar as with eagles’ wings;
They will run and not grow weary,
walk and not grow faint.

Responsorial Psalm
PS 103:1-2, 3-4, 8 AND 10
R. (1) O bless the Lord, my soul!

Bless the LORD, O my soul;
and all my being, bless his holy name.
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits.
R. O bless the Lord, my soul!
He pardons all your iniquities,
he heals all your ills.
He redeems your life from destruction,
he crowns you with kindness and compassion.
R. O bless the Lord, my soul!
Merciful and gracious is the LORD,
slow to anger and abounding in kindness.
Not according to our sins does he deal with us,
nor does he requite us according to our crimes.
R. O bless the Lord, my soul!

MT 11:28-30

Jesus said to the crowds:
“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened,
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am meek and humble of heart;
and you will find rest for yourselves.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”


“Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.'” (Matthew 11:28)

I can say that one of my favorite learning experiences is having to work on a “case study” (Mini Thesis). I’m an Information Technology student and plan on pursuing a career of being a Web Developer. What I learned is that an “IT Team” should at least consist of a programmer, a designer, and a project lead. I enjoyed the tasks I’ve been given, but then, I suddenly feel the burden. Despite the heavy load that I carry, I avoid asking my team mates for help because I was afraid. I’m not sure if I can trust them. But then there came a time that I felt tired of what I’ve been doing. I finally asked for help.

“Mga pare, di ko na kaya. Baka pwedeng pahati sa trabaho.” (I can’t do everything, can you, guys, help me?)
Then with smiles on their faces, with no hesitation, they told me,
“O sige, brad! Hinihintay ka lang naman namin humingi ng tulong eh! Haha!”(Of course you can, we were just waiting for you to ask for help!)

Sometimes, we try to control the things we should just surrender. We force to work things out. We get frustrated, but  we forget that Jesus carries the whole world. That Jesus is the leader of this team. Jesus is just waiting for you to let go of these things. When all else fails, always remember that Jesus is the way to go. Jesus is the best way. Let Jesus control your life because no life is more secured than a life surrendered to God.

Lord, teach me to be humble and let you be God in my life. And because I love you, I decide to be the carrier not of these burdens, but of your love and salvation. Amen.


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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

Pro Wrestler

First Reading
2 MC 7:1, 20-31

It happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested
and tortured with whips and scourges by the king,
to force them to eat pork in violation of God’s law.

Most admirable and worthy of everlasting remembrance was the mother,
who saw her seven sons perish in a single day,
yet bore it courageously because of her hope in the Lord.
Filled with a noble spirit that stirred her womanly heart with manly courage,
she exhorted each of them
in the language of their ancestors with these words:
“I do not know how you came into existence in my womb;
it was not I who gave you the breath of life,
nor was it I who set in order
the elements of which each of you is composed.
Therefore, since it is the Creator of the universe
who shapes each man’s beginning,
as he brings about the origin of everything,
he, in his mercy,
will give you back both breath and life,
because you now disregard yourselves for the sake of his law.”

Antiochus, suspecting insult in her words,
thought he was being ridiculed.
As the youngest brother was still alive, the king appealed to him,
not with mere words, but with promises on oath,
to make him rich and happy if he would abandon his ancestral customs:
he would make him his Friend
and entrust him with high office.
When the youth paid no attention to him at all,
the king appealed to the mother,
urging her to advise her boy to save his life.
After he had urged her for a long time,
she went through the motions of persuading her son.
In derision of the cruel tyrant,
she leaned over close to her son and said in their native language:
“Son, have pity on me, who carried you in my womb for nine months,
nursed you for three years, brought you up,
educated and supported you to your present age.
I beg you, child, to look at the heavens and the earth
and see all that is in them;
then you will know that God did not make them out of existing things;
and in the same way the human race came into existence.
Do not be afraid of this executioner,
but be worthy of your brothers and accept death,
so that in the time of mercy I may receive you again with them.”

She had scarcely finished speaking when the youth said:
“What are you waiting for?
I will not obey the king’s command.
I obey the command of the law given to our fathers through Moses.
But you, who have contrived every kind of affliction for the Hebrews,
will not escape the hands of God.”

Responsorial Psalm
PS 17:1BCD, 5-6, 8B AND 15
R. (15b) Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full.

Hear, O LORD, a just suit;
attend to my outcry;
hearken to my prayer from lips without deceit.
R. Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full.
My steps have been steadfast in your paths,
my feet have not faltered.
I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God;
incline your ear to me; hear my word.
R. Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full.
Keep me as the apple of your eye;
hide me in the shadow of your wings.
But I in justice shall behold your face;
on waking, I shall be content in your presence.
R. Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full.

LK 19:11-28

While people were listening to Jesus speak,
he proceeded to tell a parable because he was near Jerusalem
and they thought that the Kingdom of God
would appear there immediately.
So he said,
“A nobleman went off to a distant country
to obtain the kingship for himself and then to return.
He called ten of his servants and gave them ten gold coins
and told them, ‘Engage in trade with these until I return.’
His fellow citizens, however, despised him
and sent a delegation after him to announce,
‘We do not want this man to be our king.’
But when he returned after obtaining the kingship,
he had the servants called, to whom he had given the money,
to learn what they had gained by trading.
The first came forward and said,
‘Sir, your gold coin has earned ten additional ones.’
He replied, ‘Well done, good servant!
You have been faithful in this very small matter;
take charge of ten cities.’
Then the second came and reported,
‘Your gold coin, sir, has earned five more.’
And to this servant too he said,
‘You, take charge of five cities.’
Then the other servant came and said,
‘Sir, here is your gold coin;
I kept it stored away in a handkerchief,
for I was afraid of you, because you are a demanding man;
you take up what you did not lay down
and you harvest what you did not plant.’
He said to him,
‘With your own words I shall condemn you,
you wicked servant.
You knew I was a demanding man,
taking up what I did not lay down
and harvesting what I did not plant;
why did you not put my money in a bank?
Then on my return I would have collected it with interest.’
And to those standing by he said,
‘Take the gold coin from him
and give it to the servant who has ten.’
But they said to him,
‘Sir, he has ten gold coins.’
He replied, ‘I tell you,
to everyone who has, more will be given,
but from the one who has not,
even what he has will be taken away.
Now as for those enemies of mine who did not want me as their king,
bring them here and slay them before me.’”

After he had said this,
he proceeded on his journey up to Jerusalem.


“To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.” (Luke 19:26)

When I was a kid, every Sunday night on TV, I would watch “WWE Smackdown” and wait for my favorite wrestler to get in the ring and kick some butt! He would willingly sacrifice his body just to give the fans a great show. He would jump from the ring posts, do high-risk flying moves to his enemy as the crowd cheers him on. I anticipated him every week until he became the World Heavyweight Champion.

What if that wrestler decided not to do those dangerous flying moves? What if he decided to play safe? Would he be a champion?

Friends, all of us were created by God to be champions! And each one of us are equipped with great gifts. Today, God is calling you to nurture your gift. You will grow as your gift grows. And God will use that gift to help the other people grow as well. One day, that small gift God has given you, will turn into a network of gifts, blessing a lot of people. You are a champion. Be His instrument in helping His business of building more champions. Witness God’s miracles. Witness heaven being brought down to earth.

Father God, thank you for believing in me and trusting me with your gifts. I pray in humility that you anoint me in everything that I will do for you. I decide to be a blessing today to others. Amen.


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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers

#TFTFZ (Tales From The Friend Zone)

First Reading
ROM 8:18-25

Brothers and sisters:
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing
compared with the glory to be revealed for us.
For creation awaits with eager expectation
the revelation of the children of God;
for creation was made subject to futility,
not of its own accord but because of the one who subjected it,
in hope that creation itself
would be set free from slavery to corruption
and share in the glorious freedom of the children of God.
We know that all creation is groaning in labor pains even until now;
and not only that, but we ourselves,
who have the firstfruits of the Spirit,
we also groan within ourselves
as we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies.
For in hope we were saved.
Now hope that sees for itself is not hope.
For who hopes for what one sees?
But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait with endurance.

Responsorial Psalm
PS 126:1B-2AB, 2CD-3, 4-5, 6
R. (3a) The Lord has done marvels for us.

When the LORD brought back the captives of Zion,
we were like men dreaming.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
and our tongue with rejoicing.
R. The Lord has done marvels for us.
Then they said among the nations,
“The LORD has done great things for them.”
The LORD has done great things for us;
we are glad indeed.
R. The Lord has done marvels for us.
Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like the torrents in the southern desert.
Those that sow in tears
shall reap rejoicing.
R. The Lord has done marvels for us.
Although they go forth weeping,
carrying the seed to be sown,
They shall come back rejoicing,
carrying their sheaves.
R. The Lord has done marvels for us.

LK 13:18-21

Jesus said, “What is the Kingdom of God like?
To what can I compare it?
It is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in the garden.
When it was fully grown, it became a large bush
and the birds of the sky dwelt in its branches.”

Again he said, “To what shall I compare the Kingdom of God?
It is like yeast that a woman took
and mixed in with three measures of wheat flour
until the whole batch of dough was leavened.”


“I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us.” (Romans 8:18)

When I was in high school, I fell in love with my best friend. I wanted to tell her my feelings, so one day, I finally told her my super corny feelings. Unfortunately for me (although I would rather say unfortunately for her), she put me in the dark place called the “FRIENDZONE.” I tried to understand, but all I felt after was insecurity and pain (yuck). My feelings even got worse when one of my barkadas got to be her boyfriend (ouchie). I convinced myself to be a martyr for her. And I did, even when she broke up with her first boyfriend and soon after had another one (with both of them reaching their anniversaries).

Then I told myself, “I don’t deserve this.”

Finally, I decided to find ways on how to make myself happy. And I did. I discovered BLD Youth Manila and invested my time in service and in worship. I am now grateful that there is no one choking me and I have the freedom to do the things I enjoy.

You may be in the same corny situation, or in an even serious one. But in every situation God brings you, you will win and you will learn. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty because it is God’s way of molding you to become the great person you are created to be. And God’s glory will be revealed when you finally become happy because His glory and our deepest joys are one.

Lord, thank you for putting me in difficult situations. I believe in faith that it will help me fulfill my purpose.


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Caloi Licup, Little Whispers


First Reading
EZR 6:7-8, 12B, 14-20

King Darius issued an order to the officials
of West-of-Euphrates:
“Let the governor and the elders of the Jews
continue the work on that house of God;
they are to rebuild it on its former site.
I also issue this decree
concerning your dealing with these elders of the Jews
in the rebuilding of that house of God:
From the royal revenue, the taxes of West-of-Euphrates,
let these men be repaid for their expenses, in full and without delay.
I, Darius, have issued this decree;
let it be carefully executed.”

The elders of the Jews continued to make progress in the building,
supported by the message of the prophets,
Haggai and Zechariah, son of Iddo.
They finished the building according to the command
of the God of Israel
and the decrees of Cyrus and Darius
and of Artaxerxes, king of Persia.
They completed this house on the third day of the month Adar,
in the sixth year of the reign of King Darius.
The children of Israel–priests, Levites,
and the other returned exiles–
celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy.
For the dedication of this house of God,
they offered one hundred bulls,
two hundred rams, and four hundred lambs,
together with twelve he-goats as a sin-offering for all Israel,
in keeping with the number of the tribes of Israel.
Finally, they set up the priests in their classes
and the Levites in their divisions
for the service of God in Jerusalem,
as is prescribed in the book of Moses.

The exiles kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month.
The Levites, every one of whom had purified himself for the occasion,
sacrificed the Passover for the rest of the exiles,
for their brethren the priests, and for themselves.

Responsorial Psalm
PS 122:1-2, 3-4AB, 4CD-5
R. (1) Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

I rejoiced because they said to me,
“We will go up to the house of the LORD.”
And now we have set foot
within your gates, O Jerusalem.
R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
Jerusalem, built as a city
with compact unity.
To it the tribes go up,
the tribes of the LORD.
R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.
According to the decree for Israel,
to give thanks to the name of the LORD.
In it are set up judgment seats,
seats for the house of David.
R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

LK 8:19-21

The mother of Jesus and his brothers came to him
but were unable to join him because of the crowd.
He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside
and they wish to see you.”
He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers
are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”


He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and act on it.” (Luke 8:21)

I had a friend that whenever we talk, he’d always share with me everything that has been happening in his life. And when I say everything, I mean EVERY SINGLE DETAIL. If Jesus can be considered as “the word turned into flesh”, at that time, I was the “the diary turned into flesh”. I didn’t mind. But one day, he shared to me a struggle he has been facing. A struggle I haven’t encountered. He felt miserable. Then he asked me the question, “What should I do?”

I easily gave him advice. But like I said, I haven’t been in the same problem before.

Few years later, boom. I found myself in the same situation he’s been. Then I realized that the situation actually isn’t that simple. The situation made me feel like a hopeless cow stuck up a tree. The advice I gave, I couldn’t even do it myself. I finally understood that you don’t have to know and be wise about everything. And the only way to fully understand one’s situation is experiencing the same.

When we serve, it’s not easy to be like Jesus. It’s never easy to live a holy life and live according to His word. This is why God brings us to situations where He can mold us into the beings we were created to be. If you are in a MESS right now, let me tell you, my friends. He can turn your MESS into a MESSAGE. It’s hard to act on the word but because of Jesus, it’s possible. Believe it.

Reflection Song

Living For Your Glory by Tim Hughes


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