Sunday, June 23, 2013
Zechariah 12:10-11; 13:1
Jesus, the Fountain of Life and the Source of Living Water
… a fountain … to purify from sin and uncleanness. (Zechariah 13:1)
A fountain: water splashing up and out, cascading down and over. Soaking, spraying, dancing in the light; cleansing and cooling body and mind. One of the world’s most famous fountains, the Trevi fountain in Rome, spills more than twenty-one million gallons of water every day. That’s more than thirty times as much water as an Olympic-sized swimming pool holds—but it’s still a scant trickle compared with the flow that springs from the Fountain of God!
Jesus is that Fountain, always pouring out love and forgiveness, grace and inspiration. He washes away the filth and grime of sin that stains our souls. He cools the heat of anger and passion, and refreshes us when we’re exhausted in the battle against sin. The water Jesus offers satisfies our thirst and offers us peace and joy. The comfort and compassion of his love play over and through our lives, drawing us to himself and causing us to want to live in a way that is pure and holy.
Jesus is the limitless Wellspring of all we need to live in relationship with the Father: all the conviction of sin that the Holy Spirit, whom he has sent, works ever so gently in us; all the forgiveness and acceptance and gracious welcome that we long for and need to experience as we turn to him. He is in us as a spring of water welling up to eternal life, stilling the throbbing pulse of shame and guilt, and soaking us with joy and delight as our relationship with the Father grows.
This Fountain never fails or runs dry. Its supply is eternal, fed by the river of the water of life, a river that flows from the very throne of God. And Jesus promises: to those who thirst, he will give from the fountain of the water of life. No payment is required, and all who drink from that Fountain will never thirst again!
“Fountain of God, pour over me! Splash forgiveness and life and joy on me today!”
(Many thanks to The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) for allowing us to use meditations from their monthly devotional magazine. Used with permission. The Word Among Us Mass Edition contains all the readings and a meditation for each of the daily and Sunday Masses.)
Sunday, June 23, 2013
Questions for Reflection/Discussion by Catholic Men
- In the first reading, God says that he will pour out “a spirit of grace and petition.” What do you think this means? How important is it to ask God for “a spirit of grace and petition” during your times of prayer and even throughout the day? Experiment with doing this and see what happens.
- The first reading also promises a “fountain to purify from sin and uncleanness.” How important is the Sacrament of Reconciliation to you? What can you do to make your reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation more frequent and more fruitful?
- The responsorial psalm speaks of someone who is continually seeking, thirsting for, gazing at, glorifying, blessing, and calling upon the Lord. In what way does (or doesn’t) this describe your relationship with the Lord? How important to you is having a deeper relationship with Christ? What steps can you take to deepen this relationship?
- The second reading speaks of our unity in Christ as children of God. In Christ all our differences disappear. After prayerful consideration about your attitudes toward certain people, classes, races, and nationalities are there any that God may be asking you to change? What steps can you take to do so?
- In the Gospel, Christ tells us “to deny” ourselves, take up our cross daily, and follow him. What do you think this means? What are some areas of your life that you struggle to “deny yourself?” Take some time this week to pray that you, all members of your family, and all members of the parish would experience more deeply God’s unconditional love. Pray also that you would have the grace and strength to overcome weaknesses that keep you from loving God and others in the ways you know God is asking.
- The meditation tells us that Jesus is the Fountain of God who is “always pouring out love and forgiveness, grace and inspiration.” He is also “in us as a spring of water welling up to eternal life, stilling the throbbing pulse of shame and guilt, and soaking us with joy and delight as our relationship with the Father grows.” The meditation ends with these words: “And Jesus promises: to those who thirst, he will give from the fountain of the water of life. No payment is required, and all who drink from that Fountain will never thirst again!” How thirsty are you for this “water of life”? Are you thirsty enough to spend time every day with Jesus in prayer in order to receive his “living water”?
- Take some time now to pray and ask the Lord to satisfy your inner thirst for him by giving you the “water of life.” Use the prayer at the end of the meditation as a starting point.
[The discussion questions were created by Maurice Blumberg, the Director of Partner Relations for The Word Among Us Partners, (http://www.waupartners.org/), a ministry of The Word Among Us (www.wau.org) to the Military, Prisoners, and women with crisis pregnancies or who have had abortions.