Mass Readings: July 7

First: Genesis 44:18-21,23-29,45:1-5
Resp: Psalm 105:16-21
Gospel: Matthew 10:7-15

Reprinted from Presentation Ministries, a lay association of the Catholic Church that focuses on evangelization and discipleship through Bible teaching, daily Mass, the charisms of the Holy Spirit, and Small Christian Community.

FOCUS ON THE FAMILY

"Now do not be distressed, and do not reproach yourselves for having sold me here. It was really for the sake of saving lives that God sent me here ahead of you." –Genesis 45:5

Jacob had twelve sons by two wives and two maidservants. This set the stage for a terrible family life which included jealousy, attempted murder, selling Joseph as a slave, deceit, sexual sin, incest, and unforgiveness. That's only to mention a few of this dysfunctional family's problems.

Even in soap operas, we have never seen such a bizarre series of events as Jacob's family produced. I wish that no family could relate to the absolute chaos of Jacob's family. But more and more people are going through similar events in their family lives. However, as with Jacob's family, the Lord can save, forgive, reconcile, heal, and deliver families from the worst conditions. If we repent and forgive one another, the Lord will do the impossible. If we give our lives and families to the Lord, He will turn even the most terrible circumstances to the good for those who love Him (Rm 8:28).

Family life today is in serious trouble, but Jesus can save any family. "That is why I kneel before the Father from Whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name; and I pray...May He strengthen you inwardly through the working of His Spirit. May Christ dwell in your hearts through faith" (Eph 3:14-17).

PRAYER: Father, restore family life in a way greater than we can ask or imagine (Eph 3:20).
PROMISE: "As you enter his home bless it." –Mt 10:12
PRAISE: Josephine reconnected with her far-flung family via the Internet and now prays with them as well as for them.