Little Whispers, Tisha Tayag

Heaven Sent

First Reading
Sirach 48:1-4, 9-11
In those days,
like a fire there appeared the prophet Elijah
whose words were as a flaming furnace.
Their staff of bread he shattered,
in his zeal he reduced them to straits;
By the Lord’s word he shut up the heavens
and three times brought down fire.
How awesome are you, Elijah, in your wondrous deeds!
Whose glory is equal to yours?
You were taken aloft in a whirlwind of fire,
in a chariot with fiery horses.
You were destined, it is written, in time to come
to put an end to wrath before the day of the LORD,
To turn back the hearts of fathers toward their sons,
and to re-establish the tribes of Jacob.
Blessed is he who shall have seen you
and who falls asleep in your friendship.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 80:2AC AND 3B, 15-16, 18-19
R.(4) Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.
O shepherd of Israel, hearken,
From your throne upon the cherubim, shine forth.
Rouse your power.
R. Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.
Once again, O LORD of hosts,
look down from heaven, and see;
Take care of this vine,
and protect what your right hand has planted
the son of man whom you yourself made strong.
R. Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.
May your help be with the man of your right hand,
with the son of man whom you yourself made strong.
Then we will no more withdraw from you;
give us new life, and we will call upon your name.
R. Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.

Gospel
Matthew 17:9A, 10-13
As they were coming down from the mountain,
the disciples asked Jesus,
“Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?”
He said in reply, “Elijah will indeed come and restore all things;
but I tell you that Elijah has already come,
and they did not recognize him but did to him whatever they pleased.
So also will the Son of Man suffer at their hands.”
Then the disciples understood
that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.


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“Elijah will indeed come and restore all things but I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him.” (Matthew 17: 11-12)

REFLECTION
As we know, Elijah was sent by God during the times of the Old Testament. In the time of Jesus and as seen in this Gospel, Elijah has come as John the Baptist. We all know how John the Baptist’s story went. Although, people believed, listened, and followed his teachings. There were still some who were discontent with what He had to say.

Just like us, we encounter our own kinds of Elijahs. These are God-sent people who aim to give us light and help us through our everyday journeys, yet we tend to take them for granted or set them aside. It is only at the end of it all that we realize that when we neglect these people, we have placed ourselves in deeper problems or more dangers. We may have our own clouded minds and endless reasons why we end up treating them this way but I guess, now would be a good time to acknowledge them and spend time listening to them because they only want what is best for you.

As we celebrate Jesus’s coming in 11 days, let’s also take some time out to celebrate the people sent to us who served as an Elijah or a John the Baptist. If you’ve thought of somebody that never tires to be there to for you in your lowest of lows and dark times, it would be nice to show a simple appreciation to them by making them feel loved and listened to as well. I’m pretty sure it would make their holiday season shine brighter too!

Prayer
Heavenly Father, I want to take this time to thank the people that You have blessed me so much this year. The presence of the people who served as love and light has helped me overcome and conquer another year. I pray that You continue to empower them and protect them, and most importantly, may all their dreams and desires align to Your great plan for them. Amen.

Author

wc-tisha

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Little Whispers, Tisha Tayag

Call Me Maybe

First Reading
Romans 10:9-18
Brothers and sisters:
If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord
and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,
you will be saved.
For one believes with the heart and so is justified,
and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved.
The Scripture says,
No one who believes in him will be put to shame.
There is no distinction between Jew and Greek;
the same Lord is Lord of all,
enriching all who call upon him.
For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

But how can they call on him in whom they have not believed?
And how can they believe in him of whom they have not heard?
And how can they hear without someone to preach?
And how can people preach unless they are sent?
As it is written,
How beautiful are the feet of those who bring the good news!
But not everyone has heeded the good news;
for Isaiah says, Lord, who has believed what was heard from us?
Thus faith comes from what is heard,
and what is heard comes through the word of Christ.
But I ask, did they not hear?
Certainly they did; for

Their voice has gone forth to all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 19:8, 9, 10, 11
R.(10) The judgments of the Lord are true, and all of them are just.
or:
R.(John 6:63) Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life.
The law of the LORD is perfect,
refreshing the soul;
The decree of the LORD is trustworthy,
giving wisdom to the simple.
R. The judgments of the Lord are true, and all of them are just.
or:
R. Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life.
The precepts of the LORD are right,
rejoicing the heart;
The command of the LORD is clear,
enlightening the eye.
R. The judgments of the Lord are true, and all of them are just.
or:
R. Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life.
The fear of the LORD is pure,
enduring forever;
The ordinances of the LORD are true,
all of them just.
R. The judgments of the Lord are true, and all of them are just.
or:
R. Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life.
They are more precious than gold,
than a heap of purest gold;
Sweeter also than syrup
or honey from the comb.
R. The judgments of the Lord are true, and all of them are just.
or:
R. Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life.

Gospel
Matthew 4:18-22
As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers,
Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew,
casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen.
He said to them,
“Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
At once they left their nets and followed him.
He walked along from there and saw two other brothers,
James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John.
They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets.
He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father
and followed him.


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“For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:13)

REFLECTION
As a grade school teacher, I hear my name being called many times a day for many different reasons. Just recently, as I was walking away from our level corridor, a student shouted, “Ms. Tayag!” There was urgency in the voice so I quickly turned to face the student and there I saw tears about to fall from the eyes. I walked towards the student and immediately listened to the concern. The tears were falling as the student felt fearful because she has been bitten by a mosquito. For adults, this may not seem like much but for her, it was a major concern. I held her tight and invited her to prayer of surrender. As we ended our comfort session, I reminded her to place her trust in the Lord. Even though she is young, it is never too early (or too late) to have faith in the Lord.

My student’s cry was a call for help. Just like her, we go through every day calling out for help in our own ways. At home, may it be for a serious matter or to be extra affectionate, you’d hear my brothers and I shout “Maaaaa!” (“Mooom!”) to which our mother would respond to instantly even if she knows we may be up to no good. This immediate response from our mom makes us feel secure and safe. The best part here is that our Good Lord does the same for us too. Isn’t that such a delightful thing to be graced with?

My dearest friends, the letter of Paul to the Romans contains a very beautiful promise. You may be reading this and thinking of that something you wish to be saved from. This is the perfect time for you to call on His name and surrender to Him whatever it may be that is on your mind right now. God’s hotline is 24/7 and He will be the one to pick up the call. He is waiting for the phone to ring just to hear Your voice because He himself will show You how He intends to save you no matter what.

Prayer
Heavenly Father, there are thoughts and situations that I need saving from in my life. I tend to find solution and escape from worldly things only to wake up and see that it is still there, lingering by. I no longer want to do this alone so, I am calling out to You because I believe and claim that You will save me every day and always, now and forever. Amen.

Author

wc-tisha (1)

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Photo by: NeON Brand (@neonbrand at unsplash.com)

 

Little Whispers, Tisha Tayag

A for Effort

First Reading
Ezekiel 47:1-2, 8-9, 12
The angel brought me
back to the entrance of the temple,
and I saw water flowing out
from beneath the threshold of the temple toward the east,
for the façade of the temple was toward the east;
the water flowed down from the southern side of the temple,
south of the altar.
He led me outside by the north gate,
and around to the outer gate facing the east,
where I saw water trickling from the southern side.
He said to me,
“This water flows into the eastern district down upon the Arabah,
and empties into the sea, the salt waters, which it makes fresh.
Wherever the river flows,
every sort of living creature that can multiply shall live,
and there shall be abundant fish,
for wherever this water comes the sea shall be made fresh.
Along both banks of the river, fruit trees of every kind shall grow;
their leaves shall not fade, nor their fruit fail.
Every month they shall bear fresh fruit,
for they shall be watered by the flow from the sanctuary.
Their fruit shall serve for food, and their leaves for medicine.”

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9

R.(5) The waters of the river gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High!
God is our refuge and our strength,
an ever-present help in distress.
Therefore, we fear not, though the earth be shaken
and mountains plunge into the depths of the sea.
R. The waters of the river gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High!
There is a stream whose runlets gladden the city of God,
the holy dwelling of the Most High.
God is in its midst; it shall not be disturbed;
God will help it at the break of dawn.
R. The waters of the river gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High!
The LORD of hosts is with us;
our stronghold is the God of Jacob.
Come! behold the deeds of the LORD,
the astounding things he has wrought on earth.
R. The waters of the river gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High!

Second Reading
1 Corinthians 3:9C-11, 16-17
Brothers and sisters:
You are God’s building.
According to the grace of God given to me,
like a wise master builder I laid a foundation,
and another is building upon it.
But each one must be careful how he builds upon it,
for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there,
namely, Jesus Christ.

Do you not know that you are the temple of God,
and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
If anyone destroys God’s temple,
God will destroy that person;
for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.

Gospel
John 2:13-22

Since the Passover of the Jews was near,
Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
He found in the temple area those who sold oxen, sheep, and doves,
as well as the money-changers seated there.
He made a whip out of cords
and drove them all out of the temple area, with the sheep and oxen,
and spilled the coins of the money-changers
and overturned their tables,
and to those who sold doves he said,
“Take these out of here,
and stop making my Father’s house a marketplace.”
His disciples recalled the words of Scripture,
Zeal for your house will consume me.
At this the Jews answered and said to him,
“What sign can you show us for doing this?”
Jesus answered and said to them,
“Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.”
The Jews said,
“This temple has been under construction for forty-six years,
and you will raise it up in three days?”
But he was speaking about the temple of his Body.
Therefore, when he was raised from the dead,
his disciples remembered that he had said this,
and they came to believe the Scripture
and the word Jesus had spoken.


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“God is in its midst; it shall not be shaken; God will help it at break of day.” (Ps 46:6)

REFLECTION
I’ve always been the type of student that gets anxious when it comes to test-taking. This began in grade school and dragged on until high school. I had this thinking that I’m not smart enough to answer a pen-and-paper test and I won’t pass. The only time I tried to make a conscious effort to overcome this was in college, but the feeling still remained.

In 2017, I decided to further my studies and enrolled for graduate school. Knowing myself, I knew I would do well when requirements involved reporting or writing papers. Answering tests – a totally different story! In graduate school, when you are done with your academic courses, you will take a written comprehensive exam. I took mine last October and it took me about two months to prepare. I had to take time off from going out, service, and many other things just to focus on studying because that nagging feeling never left – I will not pass. Nine days before my exam, I began my own novena and went to Mass daily to offer it for my exam. I knew this was something I would never overcome on my own. I needed more than just to prepare by studying but I needed to spiritually prepare as well. Like with many battles in my life, I fought it with my prayer and surrendered it to my Lord.

On the exam days, I spent extra time in the chapel. When I was finished with the whole exam, I found myself praying for my fellow takers and proclaimed, “Lord, I claim that I will pass this exam. In Your Name. Amen.” Last week, results came out and the best birthday blessing was given to me. I saw my letter of results and I passed. I made it, I did it! I knew in my heart that what I had to do next was to give glory and praise to the One who made it all happen for me. It is through Him, that I conquered and that I made a big step closer to my dream.

Friends, the readings remind us of how God’s presence in our lives leads to many possibilities. When we feel low, weak, and unable, it is our faith that equips us and allows us to move the mountains we have to face. Whatever you are experiencing, allow God to show you His best effort and the way you will ace through things alongside him. All you need to do is…believe.

Reflection Song

Through Christ by Generation Unleashed

Author

wc-tisha

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Photo by: Green Chameleon (@craftedbygc at unsplash.com)

Little Whispers, Tisha Tayag

High and Low

First Reading
Joel 1:13-15; 2:1-2

Gird yourselves and weep, O priests!
wail, O ministers of the altar!
Come, spend the night in sackcloth,
O ministers of my God!
The house of your God is deprived
of offering and libation.
Proclaim a fast,
call an assembly;
Gather the elders,
all who dwell in the land,
Into the house of the LORD, your God,
and cry to the LORD!

Alas, the day!
for near is the day of the LORD,
and it comes as ruin from the Almighty.

Blow the trumpet in Zion,
sound the alarm on my holy mountain!
Let all who dwell in the land tremble,
for the day of the LORD is coming;
Yes, it is near, a day of darkness and of gloom,
a day of clouds and somberness!
Like dawn spreading over the mountains,
a people numerous and mighty!
Their like has not been from of old,
nor will it be after them,
even to the years of distant generations.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 9:2-3, 6 AND 16, 8-9

R.(9) The Lord will judge the world with justice.
I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart;
I will declare all your wondrous deeds.
I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, Most High.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.
You rebuked the nations and destroyed the wicked;
their name you blotted out forever and ever.
The nations are sunk in the pit they have made;
in the snare they set, their foot is caught.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.
But the LORD sits enthroned forever;
he has set up his throne for judgment.
He judges the world with justice;
he governs the peoples with equity.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.

Gospel
Luke 11:15-26

When Jesus had driven out a demon, some of the crowd said:
“By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons,
he drives out demons.”
Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
But he knew their thoughts and said to them,
“Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste
and house will fall against house.
And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?
For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul,
by whom do your own people drive them out?
Therefore they will be your judges.
But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons,
then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
When a strong man fully armed guards his palace,
his possessions are safe.
But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him,
he takes away the armor on which he relied
and distributes the spoils.
Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone,
it roams through arid regions searching for rest
but, finding none, it says,
‘I shall return to my home from which I came.’
But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order.
Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits
more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there,
and the last condition of that man is worse than the first.”


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“I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will declare all your wondrous deeds.” (Psalm 9:2)

REFLECTION
Have you ever thought about the first thing you say when something good happens? I’m pretty sure you’ve exclaimed something that reflects the happiness and joy you feel inside. Maybe there’s a slim chance that you even shout a message of thanksgiving to God. Now, look back. What’s it like when it’s the opposite? What if you’ve heard some bad news or received a message of rejection? What do you call out to God?

For some time now, I have no idea how many times I have uttered “ayoko na.” (I can’t do this anymore.) I’ve said it as a joke and I’ve said it when I mean it. Even if I say this, I continue to accomplish tasks and stay on top of my productivity game. For I know that in each moment of weakness or feeling of defeat, my God is sharpening me for something that I have yet to see and discover. I have won and lost many battles. I have felt bliss and I have been at the bottom. Wherever I find myself, I cling on to the one thing that I know is sure despite of all the happiness and heartache – my faith. You will hear me say “ayoko na” but to myself I will say “pero Ikaw kaya mo pa!” (but You are able!) This has given me opportunities to reach places I never thought I would and at the end of the day, my heart is at ease knowing that God’s got me through the good and most especially, the bad.

As an Assumption girl¹, I follow a quote from our Mother Foundress, St. Marie Eugenie. She says – “transform everything into praise and thanksgiving!” My friends, whether the path you are on is bright or dim, keep in mind this one thing. No matter what, give praise to our Heavenly Father and thank Him for all that He has done.

Reflection Song

Praise You In This Storm by Casting Crowns

Author

wc-tisha (1).jpg

Click on the bubble to find out more about Tisha!

Photo by: Priscilla Du Preez (@prriscilladuprezz at unsplash.com)

¹Assumption girl refers to a student of a Catholic all-girls school located in Manila

Little Whispers, Tisha Tayag

My Favorite Doctor

First Reading
Colossians 2:6-15

Brothers and sisters:
As you received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in him,
rooted in him and built upon him
and established in the faith as you were taught,
abounding in thanksgiving.
See to it that no one captivate you with an empty, seductive philosophy
according to the tradition of men,
according to the elemental powers of the world
and not according to Christ.

For in him dwells the whole fullness of the deity bodily,
and you share in this fullness in him,
who is the head of every principality and power.
In him you were also circumcised
with a circumcision not administered by hand,
by stripping off the carnal body, with the circumcision of Christ.
You were buried with him in baptism,
in which you were also raised with him
through faith in the power of God,
who raised him from the dead.
And even when you were dead in transgressions
and the uncircumcision of your flesh,
he brought you to life along with him,
having forgiven us all our transgressions;
obliterating the bond against us, with its legal claims,
which was opposed to us,
he also removed it from our midst, nailing it to the cross;
despoiling the principalities and the powers,
he made a public spectacle of them,
leading them away in triumph by it.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 145:1B-2, 8-9, 10-11

R.(9) The Lord is compassionate toward all his works.
I will extol you, O my God and King,
and I will bless your name forever and ever.
Every day will I bless you,
and I will praise your name forever and ever.
R. The Lord is compassionate toward all his works.
The LORD is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and of great kindness.
The LORD is good to all
and compassionate toward all his works.
R. The Lord is compassionate toward all his works.
Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD,
and let your faithful ones bless you.
Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom
and speak of your might.
R. The Lord is compassionate toward all his works.

Gospel
Luke 6:12-19

Jesus departed to the mountain to pray,
and he spent the night in prayer to God.
When day came, he called his disciples to himself,
and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles:
Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew,
James, John, Philip, Bartholomew,
Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus,
Simon who was called a Zealot,
and Judas the son of James,
and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

And he came down with them and stood on a stretch of level ground.
A great crowd of his disciples and a large number of the people
from all Judea and Jerusalem
and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon
came to hear him and to be healed of their diseases;
and even those who were tormented by unclean spirits were cured.
Everyone in the crowd sought to touch him
because power came forth from him and healed them all.


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“Everyone in the crowd sought to touch him because power came forth from him and healed them all.” (Luke 6: 19)

REFLECTION
Have you ever walked through a crowded mall or street searching for something? The inner need drives you to be extra focused on finding what you are looking for. This is what I feel whenever I search for Jesus in times of sickness: physical or otherwise.

Whenever I am down, I imagine myself to be in a crowd always reaching out to Jesus. Through the years, I made myself believe that like the woman with hemorrhage in the Gospel, just a touch of his cloak would heal me. The crowd from today’s Gospel sought the same thing. They just wanted to be healed. In more ways than one, we all want to be healed may it be physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. The point is we all need a doctor that undoubtedly knows the cure and for me that is Jesus.

Early 2018, I finally found the strength to visit a psychiatrist. I have known for years that I needed to but I was surrounded by words like “You go to Church, you don’t need that!” and I listened to these words more rather than following what I knew I really needed. I was prescribed anti-depressants and sleeping pills, but I felt the need to hide it. However, I soon realized that I am still a human being and that there are so many things that can come into play. So, I took my medication daily and I kept my spiritual life active. By doing this, I feel I was able to power through my illness more rather than allowing judgments and mean words pull me down. He journeyed with me through every breakdown, every episode, every ugly day, and showed me that healing comes in many ways and many forms.

My friends, whatever it is that you are going through I encourage you to book an appointment with my favorite doctor. Through anything that you are experiencing, He will be there. I guarantee it.

Prayer
Heavenly Father, I am walking in a crowd searching for You and longing to be healed by You. From this moment on, I surrender all my pains, whatever that may be and trust that You will heal me. I claim for healing not only for me but also for those who need it most, especially those I hold dear. Amen.

Author

wc-tisha.jpg

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Photo by: Laurynas Mereckas (@laurynasm at unsplash.com)