Go to the Well – Good News for March 7

7 03 2010

John 4:5-15

Jesus came to a town of Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of land that Jacob had given to his son Joseph. Jacob’s well was there. Jesus, tired from his journey, sat down there at the well. It was about noon.

A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” His disciples had gone into the town to buy food. The Samaritan woman said to him, “How can you, a Jew, ask me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” —For Jews use nothing in common with Samaritans.— Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God and who is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink, ‘ you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”

The woman said to him, “Sir, you do not even have a bucket and the cistern is deep; where then can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us this cistern and drank from it himself with his children and his flocks?” Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again; but whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water, so that I may not be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water. I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain; but you people say that the place to worship is in Jerusalem.” Jesus said to her, “Believe me, woman, the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You people worship what you do not understand; we worship what we understand, because salvation is from the Jews. 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 woman said to him, “I know that the Messiah is coming, the one called the Christ; when he comes, he will tell us everything.”
Jesus said to her, “I am he, the one who is speaking with you.”

Many of the Samaritans of that town began to believe in him. When the Samaritans came to him, they invited him to stay with them; and he stayed there two days. Many more began to believe in him because of his word, and they said to the woman, “We no longer believe because of your word; for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is truly the savior of the world.”

The Daily Path: Today may be a very important Sunday for someone who thirsts. Where will you seek His well of eternal life?

Good News for 9/11

11 09 2009

“To you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic.” – Jesus

Look Up – Good News for September 10

10 09 2009

St. Paul’s Letter to the Colossians 3:1-11

Brothers and sisters,

If you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.

Put to death, then, the parts of you that are earthly: immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and the greed that is idolatry. Because of these the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient. By these you too once conducted yourselves, when you lived in that way. But now you must put them all away: anger, fury, malice, slander, and obscene language out of your mouths. Stop lying to one another, since you have taken off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed, for knowledge, in the image of its creator. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all and in all.

The Daily Path: I find it so easy to focus on what’s here on earth, rather than what awaits with God.

Room to Chat: Lord, help me to keep my eyes fixed upward.


Touchdown Jesus – Good News for January 26

26 01 2009

St. Paul’s Letter to Timothy 1: 7

For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord, nor of me, a prisoner for his sake; but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God.

The Daily Path: How often do “the guys” sit around and talk about God in their lives?  It’s easy to talk about a defensive lineman crushing a quarterback. Not so easy to share how God has made a difference in you. When was the last time someone shook your hand in a sports bar and said “Nice to meet you. I’m Catholic. How about you?”

Maybe they do at Notre Dame. “Remember Zacchaeus? Yeah, he was a little dude, but man, that cat could run. 4.3 at the Galilee Scouting Combine.” 

Room to Chat: As you do the laundry this week, ask Jesus if it was easier running around with no socks.

My Road to Damascus – Good News for January 25

25 01 2009

Acts 22:3-16

Paul addressed the people in these words, “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus in Cilicia, but brought up in this city. At the feet of Gamaliel I was educated strictly in our ancestral law and was zealous for God, just as all of you are today. I persecuted this way to death, binding both men and women and delivering them to prison. Even the high priest and the whole council of elders can testify on my behalf. For from them I even received letters to the brothers and set out for Damascus to bring back to Jerusalem in chains for punishment those there as well.

“On that journey as I drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from the sky suddenly shone  around me. I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ I replied, ‘Who are you, sir?’ And he said to me, ‘I am Jesus the Nazorean whom you are persecuting.’ My companions saw the light but did not hear the voice of the one who spoke to me. I asked, ‘What shall I do, sir?’ The Lord answered me, ‘Get up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told about everything appointed for you to do.’ Since I could see nothing because of the brightness of that light, I was led by hand by my companions and entered Damascus.

“A certain Ananias, a devout observer of the law, and highly spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, came to me and stood there and said, ‘Saul, my brother, regain your sight.’ And at that very moment I regained my sight and saw him.

Then he said, ‘The God of our ancestors designated you to know his will, to see the Righteous One, and to hear the sound of his voice; for you will be his witness before all to what you have seen and heard. Now, why delay? Get up and have yourself baptized and your sins washed away, calling upon his name.'”

The Daily Path: Three years ago today, God called my name in a loud voice to get my undivided attention. On Saturday, January 25, 2006. I told my wife “You’d better drive me to the Emergency Room. I think I’m having a heart attack.” My life changed forever over the next 24 hours. One minute I’m doing the workaholic thing, the next I’m receiving the Sacrament of the Sick and Dying. In the weeks and months to follow, my health was restored… as was my Faith. I used to joke that I was a “recovering Catholic.” Suddenly I was in God’s recovery mission for my generation of lost Catholics.

What I hadn’t realized until today is that January 25 is the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. I knew there were similarities between Saul and myself in the fact that God acted in dramatic fashion so we would hear Him above all else. I wasn’t thrown off a horse, but I was knocked off the path I’d been following for so long. This serious medical intervention was God’s first action to call me home (the second is detailed in About: Good News To-Go!) Please don’t misinterpret this. I’m no saint and I certainly don’t pretend to have been called to the same place as St. Paul. I’m just another guy trying to keep God close. 

There is one other small thing we have in common: I took the name of Paul for my Confirmation. At the time I thought it was just because I liked the name Paul. Perhaps there was more to that selection than I realized. While Saul got an instant jolt from the Holy Spirit, mine took 36 years after Confirmation to kick in. Better late than never. Thank you, God!

My friends, as you travel your own road to Damascus, listen and look for God at work. He’s calling you home. I just hope your call won’t be as scary as mine was three years ago.

Who’s The Real Nut Case? – Good News for January 24

24 01 2009

Mark 3:20-21

Jesus came with his disciples into the house. Again the crowd gathered, making it impossible for them even to eat. When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.” 

The Daily Path: In Mark’s Gospel we see how even some of Jesus’ own family members doubt Him. (I encourage you to read the rest of Mark 3:22-35)

I have witnessed and experienced the pain that a family can manifest upon itself. Most of us have at some point or another. Sometimes you just shake your head in disbelief at the madness. Other times the wound is deep. Without treatment it will fester away for years.

As much as we can love and trust our relatives, I see that God offers the one true family that never disappoints or betrays us.

Room to Chat: Yesterday, I was feeling a great deal of anxiety. It grew worse as the day progressed. As evening arrived, I just went to the sofa, laid down, and closed my eyes. All I wanted to do was draw close to God. I didn’t pray in a formal sense or even have much of a dialogue. I just wanted to feel close to Him. I guess this was my way of handing that anxiety, which I had no control over, back to God. In the moments that followed… I felt at peace. 

Please consider my experience the next time you feel the path is too difficult. God IS there for you. Really!