Suy Niệm – Chúa Nhật 27 Thường Niên – October 06 – Năm C

Joseph
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Suy Niệm:   Thiên Chúa dựng nên chúng ta để chúng ta phục vụ Ngài qua đời sống thờ phượng, kính mến, và qua những anh em chúng ta. Chúa muốn chúng ta khiêm tốn phục vụ Chúa, bằng sự chu toàn bổn phận: cha mẹ đối với con cái, con cái đối với cha mẹ, tình bác ái huynh đệ với tha nhân, một tín hữu trong Giáo Hội, một người công dân đối với tổ quốc… Chúng ta cũng không huyênh hoang tự đắc vì những gì mình làm được. Vì tất cả mọi sự đều là do Chúa ban. Chúng ta chỉ là dụng cụ của Chúa, nên ta phải có thái độ khiêm tốn khi phục vụ. 

Cầu Nguyện:  Lạy Chúa, xin biến chúng con thành những khí cụ đắc lực trong bàn tay của Chúa, để chúng con biết khiêm tốn phụng sự Chúa trong tâm tình hiếu thảo, tin yêu và phục vụ anh chị em trong tình yêu thương của Chúa. Amen.


Chúa Nhật 27 Mùa Thường Niên – năm C

 

Bài Ðọc I: Kb 1, 2-3; 2, 2-4“Người công chính sẽ sống được nhờ trung tín”.

Bài trích sách Tiên tri Khabacúc.

Lạy Chúa, con kêu cầu Chúa cho đến bao giờ mà Chúa không nghe? Con phải ức ép kêu lên cùng Chúa, mà Chúa không cứu con sao? Cớ sao Chúa tỏ cho con thấy sự gian ác và lao khổ, cướp bóc và bất lương trước mặt con? Dù có công lý, nhưng kẻ đối nghịch vẫn thắng.

Chúa đáp lại tôi rằng: “Hãy chép điều con thấy, hãy khắc nó vào tấm bảng, để đọc được dễ dàng. Bởi hình lạ còn xa, nó sẽ xuất hiện trong thời sau hết, và sẽ chẳng hư không. Nó kết duyên với ngươi, hãy chờ đợi nó, vì nó sẽ đến không trì hoãn. Chắc chắn nó sẽ đến, không sai. Người không có lòng ngay thì ngã gục, nhưng người công chính sẽ sống nhờ trung tín”. Ðó là lời Chúa.

 

Ðáp Ca: Tv 94, 1-2. 6-7. 8-9    Ðáp: Ước chi hôm nay các bạn nghe tiếng Người: “Các ngươi đừng cứng lòng!” (c. 8).

Xướng: 1) Hãy tới, chúng ta hãy reo mừng Chúa, hãy hoan hô Ðá Tảng cứu độ của ta! Hãy ra trước thiên nhan với lời ca ngợi, chúng ta hãy xướng ca để hoan hô Người. – Ðáp.

2) Hãy tiến lên, cúc cung bái và sụp lạy; hãy quỳ gối trước nhan Chúa, Ðấng tạo thành ta. Vì chính Người là Thiên Chúa của ta, và ta là dân Người chăn dẫn, là đoàn chiên thuộc ở tay Người. – Ðáp.

3) Ước chi hôm nay các bạn nghe tiếng Người: “Ðừng cứng lòng như ở Meriba, như hôm ở Massa trong khu rừng vắng, nơi mà cha ông các ngươi đã thử thách Ta; họ đã thử Ta mặc dầu đã thấy công cuộc của Ta. – Ðáp.

 

Bài Ðọc II: 2 Tm 1, 6-8, 13-14  “Con chớ hổ thẹn làm chứng cho Chúa chúng ta”.

Bài trích thư thứ hai của Thánh Phaolô Tông đồ gửi cho Timô-thêu.

Con thân mến, cha khuyên con hãy làm sống lại ơn Thiên Chúa đã ban cho con do việc đặt tay của cha. Vì chưng, Thiên Chúa không ban cho chúng ta một thần khí nhát sợ, mà là thần khí dũng mạnh, bác ái và tiết độ. Vậy con chớ hổ thẹn làm chứng cho Chúa chúng ta, và cho cha nữa, là tù nhân của Người, nhưng con hãy đồng lao cộng tác với cha vì Tin Mừng, nhờ quyền năng của Thiên Chúa.

Con hãy lấy những lời lành lẽ phải, con đã nghe cha nói, làm mẫu mực trong đức tin và lòng mến nơi Ðức Giêsu Kitô. Con hãy cậy nhờ Thánh Thần là Ðấng ngự trong chúng ta mà gìn giữ kho tàng tốt đẹp.   Ðó là lời Chúa.

 

Alleluia: Ga 10, 27 Alleluia, alleluia! – Chúa phán: “Con chiên Ta thì nghe tiếng Ta: Ta biết chúng và chúng theo Ta”. – Alleluia.

 

Phúc Âm: Lc 17, 5-10 “Nếu các con có lòng tin”.

Tin Mừng Chúa Giêsu Kitô theo Thánh Luca.

Khi ấy, các Tông đồ thưa với Chúa Giêsu rằng: “Xin Thầy ban thêm lòng tin cho chúng con”. Chúa liền phán rằng: “Nếu các con có lòng tin bằng hạt cải, thì dẫu các con khiến cây dâu này rằng: ‘Hãy bứng rễ lên mà đi trồng dưới biển’, nó liền vâng lời các con.

“Ai trong các con có người đầy tớ cày bừa hay chăn súc vật ngoài đồng trở về, liền bảo nó rằng: ‘Mau lên, hãy vào bàn dùng bữa’, mà trái lại không bảo nó rằng: ‘Hãy lo dọn bữa tối cho ta, hãy thắt lưng và hầu hạ ta cho đến khi ta ăn uống đã, sau đó ngươi mới ăn uống’. Chớ thì chủ nhà có phải mang ơn người đầy tớ, vì nó đã làm theo lệnh ông dạy không? Thầy nghĩ rằng: Không. Phần các con cũng vậy, khi các con làm xong mọi điều đã truyền dạy các con, thì các con hãy nói rằng: ‘Chúng tôi là đầy tớ vô dụng, vì chúng tôi đã làm điều chúng tôi phải làm'”.   Ðó là lời Chúa.

 

 

Gospel Lk 17: 5-10

The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”
The Lord replied,
“If you have faith the size of a mustard seed,
you would say to this mulberry tree,
‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.

“Who among you would say to your servant
who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field,
‘Come here immediately and take your place at table’?
Would he not rather say to him,
‘Prepare something for me to eat.
Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink.
You may eat and drink when I am finished’?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?
So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded,
say, ‘We are unprofitable servants;
we have done what we were obliged to do.'”

Daily Reading & Meditation   Sunday (October 04): Lord, increase our faith!

Scripture: Luke 17:5-10   

5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 And the Lord said,”If you had faith as a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this sycamine tree, `Be rooted up, and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”

7 “Will any one of you, who has a servant plowing or keeping sheep, say to him when he has come in from the field, `Come at once and sit down  at table’?  8 Will he not rather say to him, `Prepare supper for me, and gird yourself and serve me, till I eat and drink; and afterward you shall eat and drink’? 9 Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that is commanded you, say, `We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.'”

Meditation: How strong is your faith in God and how can you grow in it? Faith is not something vague, uncertain, undefineable, or something which requires a leap of the imagination or worse, some kind of blind allegiance. In fact, it is quite the opposite. Faith is a response of trust and belief in what is reliable, truthful, certain, and real. To have faith is to believe and trust in someone or something. We believe in the power of electricity even though we can’t visibly see it with the naked eye.  We know we can tap into that power and use it to do things we could not do by our own human power. Faith in God works in a similar way.

When God reveals himself to us he gives us the “assurance” and “conviction” that his power and presence and glory is just as real, and even more real, than our experience of the natural physical world around us (Letter to the Hebrews 11:1-3). Things around us change, but God never changes. He is constant, ever true to his word, and always faithful to his promises (Psalm 145:13, Hebrews 10:23). That is why we can have the greatest assurance of his unconditional love for us and why we can hope with utter conviction that he will give us everything he has promised. Jesus is God’s visible proof that his word is reliable and true – his love is unfailing and unconditional – and his power is immeasurably great and unlimited.

The Holy Spirit helps us to grow in expectant faith
What did Jesus mean when he said to his disciples that our faith can move trees and mountains as well (see Matthew17:20; Mark 11:23)? The term “mountain remover” was used for someone who could solve great problems and difficulties. Don’t we often encounter challenges and difficulties which seem beyond our power to handle? What appears impossible to human power is possible to those who believe in God’s power. Faith is a gift freely given by God to help us know God personally, to understand his truth, and to live in the power of his love. God expects more from us than we can simply do by ourselves. That is why Jesus gives us the gift and power of the Holy Spirit who helps us to grow strong in faith, persevere in hope, and endure in love.

Faith in God is the key for removing obstacles and difficulties which keep us from doing his will. We belong to God and our lives are no longer our own. Our joy and privilege is to follow the Lord Jesus and to serve in the power of his love and goodness. The Lord Jesus is ever ready to work in and through us by his Spirit for his glory. For our faith to be effective it must be linked with trust and with obedience – an  active submission to God and a willingness to do whatever he commands. Do you trust in the grace and strength which God freely gives to help us resist temptation and to overcome obstacles in doing his will?

Parable of the faithful servant who is indebted to God
Are you ready to give the Lord your best, regardless of what it might cost you? Perhaps we are like the laborer in Jesus’ parable who expected special favor and reward for going the extra mile (Luke 17:5-10)? How unfair for the master to compel his servant to give more than what was expected! Don’t we love to assert our rights: “I will give only what is required and no more!” But who can satisfy the claims of love and loyalty? Our lives are not our own – they belong to God who has ransomed us from slavery to sin with the precious blood of his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:18).

Jesus used this parable of the dutiful servant to explain that we can never put God in our debt or make the claim that God owes us something. We must regard ourselves as God’s servants, just as Jesus came “not to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28). Service of God and of our neighbor is both a voluntary or free act and a sacred duty. One can volunteer for service or be compelled to do service for one’s country or for one’s family when the call and need arises. Likewise, God expects us to serve him willingly and give him the worship, praise, and honor which is his due. And he gladly accepts the  free-will offering of our lives to him as our Lord and Master. What makes our offering pleasing to God is the love we express in the act of self-giving. True love is always sacrificial, generous, and selfless – it is wholly directed to the one we love and serve.

The love of God compels us to give our best
How can we love God and others selflessly and unconditionally? Scripture tells us that God himself is love (1 John 4:16) – he is the author of life and the source of all true relationships of love and friendship. He created us in love for love, and he fills our hearts with the boundless love that gives all that is good for the sake of the beloved (Romans 5:5). If we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us (1 John 4:12).

God honors the faithful servant who loves and serves with a generous heart. He is ever ready to work in and through each one of us by his Spirit for his glory. We must remember, however, that God can never be indebted to us. We have no claim on him. His love compels us to give him our best! And when we have done our best, we have simply done our duty. We can never outmatch God in his immeasurable merciful love, his extravagant kindness and goodness, and his ever constant and unceasing care for us. The Scriptures remind us over and over again that God’s love is steadfast, loyal, and lasts forever – it will never cease (Psalm 89, Psalm 100, Psalm 118, Psalm 136). Saint Augustine of Hippo writes, “God loves each one of us as if there were only one of us to love.” Does the love of God compel you to give your best to him with generous love and gratitude for all that he has done for you?

“Lord Jesus, fill me with your consuming love and set my heart free to love generously and to serve selflessly. Fill me with gratitude for all you have done for me, and increase my faith and loyalty to you who are My All, My Strength, and My Life”

Psalm 95:1-2,6-9

1 O come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
6 O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!
7 For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.  O that today you would hearken to his voice!
8 Harden not your hearts, as at Meribah, as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
9 when your fathers tested me, and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.

Daily Quote from the early church fathers: To increase faith is to strengthen it by the Holy Spirit, by Cyril of Alexandria (376-444 AD)

“They ask, ‘Add faith to us.’ They do not ask simply for faith, for perhaps you might imagine them to be without faith. They rather ask Christ for an addition to their faith and to be strengthened in faith. Faith partly depends on us and partly is the gift of the divine grace. The beginning of faith depends on us and our maintaining confidence and faith in God with all our power. The confirmation and strength necessary for this comes from the divine grace. For that reason, since all things are possible with God, the Lord says that all things are possible for him who believes (Mark 9:23). The power that comes to us through faith is of God. Knowing this, blessed Paul also says in the first epistle to the Corinthians, ‘For to one is given through the Spirit the word of wisdom, to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit, and to another faith in the same Spirit’ (1 Corinthians 12:8). You see that he has placed faith also in the catalog of spiritual graces. The disciples requested that they might receive this from the Savior, contributing also what was of themselves. By the descent upon them of the Holy Spirit, he granted it to them after the fulfillment of the dispensation. Before the resurrection, their faith was so feeble that they were liable even to the charge of being ‘little of faith’.” (excerpt from COMMENTARY ON LUKE, HOMILIES 113-16)

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