Monday, June 10, 2019 at 6:04 PM
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060919 Pentecost - Deacon Tony

Deacon Tony Conti

Pentecost Sunday - Mass during the Day    
Lectionary: 63

 

  • Our responsorial psalm reflects the hopes and dreams of all human beings: “Lord, send out your Spirit, and renew the face of the earth.
  • There’s a lot of renewal needed in our world… And that renewal always begins through the Holy Spirit working in the lives of individuals
  • From the Gospel we hear: “The Advocate, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you.”
  • Are we just getting by, or are we allowing the Spirit to lead us to a fuller more meaningful life?
  • Are we open to allowing the Spirit to exert a greater influence on our lives… or are we merely running on autopilot?
  • Do we sense the Spirit stirring within us, or are we numb with the cares of the world pressing in upon us?
  • Jesus tells us earlier in the Gospel of John (6:63): “It is the spirit that gives life, while the flesh is of no avail. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.”
  • The problems and issues of this world can easily stifle the Spirit within us…
  • How we choose to live is up to us – Will we feed the Spirit within us and encourage its growth, or will we let it smolder in favor of keeping pace with what the world tells us is important?
  • The Holy Spirit helps us to see reality through the eyes of Jesus’... 
  • We recognize and manifest the Spirit of God in our lives, through the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord
  • Wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude and knowledge are self explanatory – They’re gifts every human being needs for a full and meaningful life…
  • Piety or Holiness means a lot of things to a lot of people…
  • We become Holy not through our works, but through our assimilation into the Body of Christ – An assimilation that is nurtured and strengthened through the work of Holy Spirit…
  • And it’s this last gift – Fear of the Lord which is the most misunderstood…
  • Fear of the Lord in the Hebrew context is a feeling of “awe and wonder” at the magnificence of the Creator of all things… It has nothing to do with punishment
  • That misunderstanding has led to generations of people who formed their image of God around an angry & vengeful taskmaster who threatened punishment for those who failed to live up to his standards…
  • If we’re one of those who see God in this light… we need to ask ourselves two simple questions: How could we possibly love a god that we’re afraid of?... And why would we want to spend eternity with such a god?
  • One of the primary obstacles to allowing the Spirit to work more fully in our lives is holding onto unforgiveness...
  • When we refuse to let go of past hurts... When we replay them in our minds over and over again... When we insist upon savoring the bitterness of past offenses... We hinder the Spirit from working more fully in our lives...
  • Unforgiveness imprisons us in chains of our own making, and can keep us stuck for as long as it takes for us to let go of that unforgiveness...
  • We must always remember that forgiveness extends not only to others… But also to ourselvesWe need to learn to forgive ourselves as well as others
  • The Spirit within us not only needs to be fed and nurtured – It needs to be heard...
  • It’s very difficult to hear the Spirit speaking to us in the noise and activity of the world…
  • Have we ever reflected upon the fact that the Power that created the Universe resides within usloves usknows our name… and is present to help guide us through life?
  • When we spend too much time in our heads - We can miss the Holy Spirit speaking to us in our hearts...
  • Jesus didn’t come to answer all of our questions – He came to show us the way, and the Holy Spirit, the Advocate; is our designated guide for the journey...
  • Who of us would go on a long journey without even a map to guide us… Yet that’s in essence what we do when we ignore the promptings of Spirit in our lives…
  • The Spirit guides us, provides mid-course corrections, and shows us where we’re falling short in our lives
  • The mystery that is God, the mystery that is our life, can never be adequately explained in any way that we can comprehend on this side of heaven... and that’s where faith comes in
  • Faith is the ability to live in uncertainty without fear...
  • Faith allows us to live without the need for all the answers... Without the need to be fully informed... and without the need to always be right...
  • Life is not a “game...”
  • And yet so many of us go through life trying to manipulate and control people and circumstances for personal advantage... As if life were some kind of competition that we needed to win...
  • We read in the Gospel of John (4:23-24): “But the hour is coming, and is now here, when true worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and truth; and indeed the Father seeks such people to worship him.  God is Spirit, and those who worship him must worship in Spirit and truth."
  • The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth...
  • When we’re filled with the Spirit, our yes means yes, and our no means no...
  • As Jesus said of Nathanael in the Gospel of John (1:47)Here is a true Israelite. There is no duplicity in him.”
  • When we allow the Spirit more influence in our lives – We become more transparent to others, and most importantly; we become more transparent to God...
  • St. Teresa of Avila said Humility is Truth...
  • When we’re filled with the Spirit of Truth; Humility is the natural result...
  • I’ll close with a quote from Marianne Williamson who wrote: “We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.  It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.”  (A Return to Love; Pg 191).

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