Devotional thoughts for the 2nd Sunday after Pentecost – 2nd June 2013

In today’s reading we find the instructions given by our Lord to His blessed Apostles while they were about to start their mission works. We should not forget that our Church Fathers have selected this portion of the Holy Scriptures, as we all have obtained the full of the Holy Spirit during the renewal on the day of Pentecost. We also are bound to continue His works on earth, as long as we could and that is why the Holy Spirit is renewed. Our Lord gave a long list of certain dos and do not’s. Let us give heed to two of them.
1. Go rather to the lost sheep (verse 6)
2. Preach that the Kingdom of God is at hand. (verse-7)
3. Heal the sick, cleanse the Lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely give that you have received free. (Verse =8
These commands were not only for the selected 12 disciples, but also for one and all who have accepted Lord Jesus as their Lord, God and Savior. Many of us think that works of this regard are meant for a few who have dedicated their entire lives for the sake of our Lord  But the truth is that we all have equal responsibility to do the will of God.
Our Lord asked to go to the lost sheep of Israel. The Israelites often claimed to be the children of God Almighty and they believed that they were so close and near God. Our Lord Jesus incarnated and saved the entire mankind. He made us worthy to be known as the children of God. In that sense, there is no for repeating the word Israel in the contemporary thoughts. Let us think about our own community. How many are going away from the lively spiritual lives? There is no need of erosion of the faithful from the community day by day. The erosion to other revival groups is not the basic specimens of lost experience. How many of our own people live without prayer? How many live without attending the worships? Are we concerned about them?  With true feeling of guilty consciousness these questions are shared here. Let us do whatever we could for the sake of our own brethren
Though our Lord used the term ‘preach’ He has cleared it that we all could be His witnesses. Before bestowing the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles as well as other faithful of the early church for the first time, our Lord insisted them to wait for the promise of His Father in heaven. They waited and prayed together with one mind. In all the sacraments, there is special occasion when and where the holy Spirit would get dwelled. The Holy Church teaches that the entire congregation also would get the dwelling of the Holy Spirit in them, provided they wait for and pray for the indwelling, when the Holy Spirit would dwell in the Sacrament of Holy Eucharist or Baptism or any other Sacrament. If we wait for and pray for the fullness of the Holy Spirit in us we would be blessed by God and we could do His will as envisaged by Him. We could witness that the Kingdom of God is at hand.
Thirdly our Lord asks us to heal the sick, cleanse the Lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely give that you have received free. Whenever we partake our Lord’s flesh and blood, the veins in our body turns full of the living blood of our Lord. Such faithful could easily heal the sick. Let us all pray for the sick and the weak. This is an age when the number of patients is increasing tremendously. Being true Christians we have a great responsibility to pray for the people around us. Many people irrespective of faith and religion are living in a state similar to the dead. They are so depressed due to one or other reason. Even though we cannot give life to a clinically dead person, we give provide life of hope and faith to the ones in great despair and depression.
We should not forget our Lord’s words: Give freely what you have received free. Many of our people are so lavish in spending for the charity works. We should not give for our worldly gains. We must give with the feeling and faith that what all are held by us are not ours but they are the trusts entrusted to us by our Lord God.
May God bless us all.
Jose Kurian Puliyeril, Kottayam

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