Benedict Tuazon, Little Whispers

Shift ‘Have’ to ‘Want’

FIRST READING
1 Kgs 8:22-23, 27-30

Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD
in the presence of the whole community of Israel,
and stretching forth his hands toward heaven,
he said, “LORD, God of Israel,
there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below;
you keep your covenant of mercy with your servants
who are faithful to you with their whole heart.

“Can it indeed be that God dwells on earth?
If the heavens and the highest heavens cannot contain you,
how much less this temple which I have built!
Look kindly on the prayer and petition of your servant, O LORD, my God,
and listen to the cry of supplication which I, your servant,
utter before you this day.
May your eyes watch night and day over this temple,
the place where you have decreed you shall be honored;
may you heed the prayer which I, your servant, offer in this place.
Listen to the petitions of your servant and of your people Israel
which they offer in this place.
Listen from your heavenly dwelling and grant pardon.”

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 84:3, 4, 5 And 10, 11
R. (2) How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord, mighty God!

My soul yearns and pines
for the courts of the LORD.
My heart and my flesh
cry out for the living God.
R. How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord, mighty God!
Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow a nest
in which she puts her young?
Your altars, O LORD of hosts,
my king and my God!
R. How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord, mighty God!
Blessed they who dwell in your house!
continually they praise you.
O God, behold our shield,
and look upon the face of your anointed.
R. How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord, mighty God!
I had rather one day in your courts
than a thousand elsewhere;
I had rather lie at the threshold of the house of my God
than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
R. How lovely is your dwelling place, Lord, mighty God!

Gospel
Mk 7:1-13

When the Pharisees with some scribes who had come from Jerusalem
gathered around Jesus,
they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals
with unclean, that is, unwashed, hands.
(For the Pharisees and, in fact, all Jews,
do not eat without carefully washing their hands,
keeping the tradition of the elders.
And on coming from the marketplace
they do not eat without purifying themselves.
And there are many other things that they have traditionally observed,
the purification of cups and jugs and kettles and beds.)
So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him,
“Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders
but instead eat a meal with unclean hands?”
He responded,
“Well did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites,
as it is written:

This people honors me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me;
In vain do they worship me,
teaching as doctrines human precepts.

You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human tradition.”
He went on to say,
“How well you have set aside the commandment of God
in order to uphold your tradition!
For Moses said,
Honor your father and your mother,
and Whoever curses father or mother shall die.
Yet you say,
‘If someone says to father or mother,
“Any support you might have had from me is qorban”‘
(meaning, dedicated to God),
you allow him to do nothing more for his father or mother.
You nullify the word of God
in favor of your tradition that you have handed on.
And you do many such things.”
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REFLECTION
“This people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me; In vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines human precepts”

When I was younger, I remember attending mass with my family every Sunday. I would sing the songs and participate in the responses but I didn’t understand what was happening. All I knew then was I had to. My prayer life was weak and I would just recite the same prayers every night. After taking my Youth Life in the Spirit Seminar, an appreciation for the Mass grew in me. My prayer life changed and I started to consider praying as sustaining my relationship with the Lord. He became a friend to talk to. This made me fall in love with serving the Lord every prayer meeting.

In the 1st reading our God reminds us to seek Him and for sure, He will listen wholeheartedly. He may not answer your prayers today but trust that He is preparing something great for you. The Lord wants us to obey Him not because we have to but because we LOVE to.-Benedict Tuazon. YLSS#25

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, Thank you for teaching us how to pray and for giving us hope as we seek You and praise You. I place my faith and hope in You because I know that you are preparing the best for me. Amen.

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