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The Week of February 17, 2019

The 6th SUNDAY

of Ordinary Time

Brief reflections on the upcoming week’s Scripture readings.


The Word…

 Thus says the LORD: Cursed is the one who trusts in human beings,
who seeks his strength in flesh, whose heart turns away from the LORD.
He is like a barren bush in the desert that enjoys no change of season,
but stands in a lava waste, a salt and empty earth.
Blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose hope is the LORD.
He is like a tree planted beside the waters that stretches out its roots to the stream:

it fears not the heat when it comes; its leaves stay green;

in the year of drought it shows no distress, but still bears fruit.

 (Jer 17:5-8)

Pondering the Word…

Scripture is replete with wonderful images from nature and real world situations in which we find ourselves. There is a form of prayer called Visio Divina, similar to Lectio Divina, but instead of reading sacred text, we contemplate a painting, an icon, or a photograph and pray with the image. Today, I invite you to do both: read Jeremiah’s text above and reflect the images below. What words come to mind when you look at the images? How do the images make you feel? What do you want to say to God about your thoughts and emotions?

The prophet’s words are stark. He presents an “either/or” choice—you are either cursed or you are blessed.  This is also common in Scripture, which is probably why we tend to be more comfortable with hard and fast rules—this is what you have to do to get to heaven; otherwise, you’re out of luck.