Saturday, 11/26/16 – Be Vigilant and Pray

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“Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy

from carousing and drunkenness

and the anxieties of daily life,

and that day catch you by surprise like a trap.

For that day will assault everyone

who lives on the face of the earth.

Be vigilant at all times

and pray that you have the strength

to escape the tribulations that are imminent

and to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21: 34-36

Sometimes we can learn a lot from animals. When they are at the bottom of the food chain, much like the picture of the chipmunk on guard, you tend to be vigilant at all times. We humans don’t think of ourselves at the bottom of anything. We become drowsy with life and the cares of the world. We sin. We are the bottom of the devil’s food chain, but do not give him all the credit. We are sometimes the source of our own temptation which could be a slip of the lip or gossip. Yes, men gossip.  

Ask yourself this question. Can I afford to let my guard down? If I could communicate with a chipmunk or rabbit, I think I know what they would say. If you are reading this you probably have your guard up, but what happens when you leave this computer screen? What happens when you leave church Sunday?

Today is the end of our liturgical year. Tomorrow we start the season of Advent in preparation for the Birth of Our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Jesus and His Churches  final message this year is  to be vigilant and pray.  In Revelations in today’s reading the angel says,”Behold I am coming soon.” It is our duty to stand guard and be vigilant. We do it by staying aware that we are not the top but the bottom and that the devil and  our own weaknesses are our enemies. 

Prayer can be simple but effective.  How many times have I heard a friend or relative say, “ Lord give me strength!”. Prayer is not always formal or long. It can be short and sweet. Also they can be cumulative.  We had a reading a couple of weeks ago that puts prayer into perspective.  Revelations 5:8  says  “Each of the elders held a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of the holy ones.” That is a beautiful thought that my prayer (any prayer)  could be incense.Our readings today are the culmination of the Church’s instructions for us. Our prayer does not have to be long or complicated, but each prayer builds on another and we are giving witness that we are nothing and totally vulnerable without God.   The more we admit this the better our communication with God is. If you think you have trouble praying read Romans 8.

Prayer and vigilance give us the strength we need to survive. The Church knows that without them we who are at the bottom of the Devil’s food chain we will not survive.

Happy New Year!

Readings:  Revelations 22:1-7; Psalm 95:1-2,3-5,6-7AB; Luke 21: 34-36

God Bless

Bob Burford  

About the Author

My name is Bob Burford and am married to my lovely bride, Anna. I am a cradle Catholic and worship and serve at Saint Paul's Catholic Church in Saint Petersburg, Florida. I am active in the Knights of Columbus and a non denominational Cursillo movement called Via de Cristo. I meet every Thursday with this group and have done so for over thirty years. We discuss our walk with the Lord every week. College degrees in Economics and Accounting. I am semi-retired. I have six grandchildren and three great grandchildren. The last great grandchild, Assa, was born December 14th, 2017. That was a surprise! Love Pope Frances.

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  1. Happy new year, indeed, Bob and to all those who may be reading this. I thank you for today’s reflection and will share to family, relatives and friends. It is a good time to be reminded of the need to always remain vigilant and tha vigilance is to pray. Realizing that God loves us more than we love Him, makes us cringe somehow in shame when we say, I love you Lord and we only do so when we are up against the wall. But when life seem going good, we forget HIm. I join you and all your followers and the followers of A CATHOLIC MOMENT in meeting the new year of the Church with a heart that is ready to be purified more each day. Again, many thanks and God bless you in all your endeavors!

  2. Our wonderful church provides so many good things to help us on our journey through life. To-day is my first day of using daily reflections from this source. Perhaps our individual Churches should encourage and help our members to access the internet for the good things that are available. A sincere thank you to those who have given so much of their time and energy to serving the Church in this way. God bless you all and a happy new year.

  3. Thank you Lord that I can pray and communicate with you. This is my strength in keeping my faith. It is through prayers Lord that I can feel your presence in my life.

  4. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, your wisdom and your heart. God bless you and your family! Happy New Year to our Catholic Church! :)

  5. Thank you for your insight and loving deliverance of God’s message. We all need reminding that we are dependent on God’s mercy. I love the visual with prayers being incense as well.

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