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Reflections for Sunday, July 17, 2016

Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion

Mass Readings:
1st Reading: Genesis 18:1-10
2nd Reading: Colossians 1:24-28
Responsorial: Psalm 15:2-5 Gospel: Luke 10:38-42

What Does it Mean to Have “Christ in You, the Hope for Glory”

Christ in you, the hope for glory. (Colossians 1:27)

There are three ways to look at these words: the heart of the message is “Christ.” The sweetness of the message is “Christ in you.” And the vision for the message is “the hope for glory.”

When we dwell on Jesus, we can’t help but be led to the cross. Every time we celebrate Mass, we recall the sacrifice he has made for us and the redemption he has won for us. Every title we give to Jesus—Friend, Lord, Brother, Bridegroom, Priest, Prophet, and King—focuses on the self-giving love that he showed us on the cross.

“Christ in you” is a wonderful promise of the gospel. Christ in you is Christ leading us, possessing us, reigning over us, and filling us. Paul speaks about this when he tells us to “be transformed” (Romans 12:2). The aim of Christ in us is to change the way we think and act. The more we tell Jesus, “I give you the freedom to work in me” the more we will find his power and his grace at work in us, making us more like him.

At some point, we will all face death. While for most of us, this will be a difficult, even scary transition, we must have faith. Jesus promised us glorified bodies with glorified friends living together in a glorified world. At the Last Supper, he even prayed, “I have given them the glory you gave me” (John 17:22). This is why he came to us: to fill us with his grace and to transform us with his glory.

So when you go to Mass today, focus your heart on these seven words. Christ, who poured out his life for you on the cross, lives in you. He is in your heart, offering to fill you with his love and transform you by his grace. And this Christ, who is at work in you, has one central goal for everything he is doing: to bring you into his heavenly glory.

“Jesus, show me your glory, and help me put all of my hope in you.”

(Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. Used with permission.)

Questions for Reflection or Discussion

1. In the first reading, the Lord comes to Abraham with two angels and appears to him as three men. Abraham goes out of his way to be hospitable to these strangers, and is rewarded with a promise that Sarah, though barren, will bear a son. The book of Hebrews 13:1-3 has this to say about being hospitable to one another: “Let mutual love continue. Do not neglect hospitality, for through it some have unknowingly entertained angels. Be mindful of prisoners as if sharing their imprisonment, and of the ill-treated as of yourselves, for you also are in the body.”
• Why do you think the Lord places so much importance on being hospitable?
• How would you rate your own hospitality?
• What steps can you take to improve it?

2. The responsorial psalm begins with these words: “He who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord” The psalm goes on to describe the attributes of the person who “shall never be disturbed.”
• What are some of the attributes of a just and blameless person that are listed in this psalm?
• How can you better incorporate some of these attributes into your own life?

3. In the letter to the Colossians, the Apostle Paul speaks of “the mystery hidden from ages and from generations past.” He goes on to say that this great mystery of God, “has been manifested to his holy ones,
to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory.”
• What do these words from the second reading mean to you?
• What is your understanding of this “mystery” described by Paul?

4. In the Gospel reading, we hear of the familiar story of Martha and Mary. Mary sat at Jesus feet, listening to him, while Martha anxiously waited on him.
• Why do you think Jesus said that “Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her” (Luke 10:42)?
• What about you? How would you describe the “better part” when it comes to your relationship with Jesus?
• Are you always choosing this “better part”? If not, what steps can you take to choose it more often?

5. The meditation is a reflection on this verse from the second reading: “Christ in you, the hope for glory” (Colossians 1:27). The meditation describes three ways we can meditate on this verse and ends with these words: “So when you go to Mass today, focus your heart on these seven words. Christ, who poured out his life for you on the cross, lives in you. He is in your heart, offering to fill you with his love and transform you by his grace. And this Christ, who is at work in you, has one central goal for everything he is doing: to bring you into his heavenly glory.”
• What are some ways you can “focus your heart on these seven words,” prior to and during Mass, so that you can better prepare yourself to receive Christ in the Eucharist?

6. Take some time now to pray and ask the Lord for just a glimpse of his “glory” and for a greater hope and trust in him. Use the prayer below from the end of the meditation as a starting point.


Maurice Blumberg is the Director of Partner Relations for The Word Among Us Partners, (http://www.waupartners.org/), a ministry of The Word Among Us (http://www.wau.org) to the Military, Prisoners, and women with crisis pregnancies or who have had abortions. Maurice was also the founding Executive Director of the National Fellowship of Catholic Men (http://www.nfcmusa.org/), for which he is currently a Trustee. He can be contacted at  [email protected] or [email protected].