Daily Archives: July 29, 2013

Monday, 29 Jul – Uncle Moses

29 July – Memorial of St. Martha

Martha was the sister of Mary of Bethany and Lazarus. In the West, her feast day comes a week after that of St Mary Magdalene because of the old and probably erroneous tradition that Mary Magdalene was the same person as Martha’s sister.

  But at least Martha and Mary both get celebrated somehow. What about poor Lazarus? He deserves our sympathy for being brought back to life by Jesus so as, later, to have to die all over again. What he thought of being brought back to Earth is not recorded. The presence of the incarnate Lord must have made up for the postponement of Heaven, but – where less dramatic circumstances are concerned – we should think of Lazarus when we prepare to make spectacular acts of charity on behalf of people who may not necessarily appreciate our interventions.

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Exoduc 32:15-24, 30-34

Moses made his way back down the mountain with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands, tablets inscribed on both sides, inscribed on the front and on the back. These tablets were the work of God, and the writing on them was God’s writing engraved on the tablets.

  Joshua heard the noise of the people shouting. ‘There is the sound of battle in the camp’, he told Moses. Moses answered him:
‘No song of victory is this sound,
no wailing for defeat this sound;
it is the sound of chanting that I hear.’
As he approached the camp and saw the calf and the groups dancing, Moses’ anger blazed. He threw down the tablets he was holding and broke them at the foot of the mountain. He seized the calf they had made and burned it, grinding it into powder which he scattered on the water; and he made the sons of Israel drink it. To Aaron Moses said, ‘What has this people done to you, for you to bring such a great sin on them?’ ‘Let not my lord’s anger blaze like this’ Aaron answered. ‘You know yourself how prone this people is to evil. They said to me, “Make us a god to go at our head; this Moses, the man who brought us up from Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” So I said to them, “Who has gold?,” and they took it off and brought it to me. I threw it into the fire and out came this calf.’
  On the following day Moses said to the people, ‘You have committed a grave sin. But now I shall go up to the Lord: perhaps I can make atonement for your sin.’ And Moses returned to the Lord. ‘I am grieved,’ he cried ‘this people has committed a grave sin, making themselves a god of gold. And yet, if it pleased you to forgive this sin of theirs…! But if not, then blot me out from the book that you have written.’ The Lord answered Moses, “It is the man who has sinned against me that I shall blot out from my book. Go now, lead the people to the place of which I told you. My angel shall go before you but, on the day of my visitation, I shall punish them for their sin.’

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John 11:19-27

Many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to sympathise with them over their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus had come she went to meet him. Mary remained sitting in the house. Martha said to Jesus, ‘If you had been here, my brother would not have died, but I know that, even now, whatever you ask of God, he will grant you.’ ‘Your brother’ said Jesus to her ‘will rise again.’ Martha said, ‘I know he will rise again at the resurrection on the last day.’ Jesus said:

‘I am the resurrection and the life.
If anyone believes in me, even though he dies he will live,
and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.
Do you believe this?’
‘Yes, Lord,’ she said ‘I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who was to come into this world.’

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Blot me out from the book that you have written 

‘With great powers come great responsibilities’ and of course this popular quote comes from the character Uncle Ben of Spiderman. Similarly, Jesus tells us of our responsibilities as Christians. As having received the sacrament of baptism, so does our mission of having the great responsibility in showing Christ love through our actions, bringing others around us closer to Christ. I have never been asked to be a godfather to someone, perhaps not yet. Most of the godparents I have known were only close to their god-child when they are going through baptism or confirmation. After all the beautiful ceremony, the newly confirmed somehow finds their own way in the various ministries and even worse, some may just dwindle away from the Church after all. Godparent seems to be just a title to being the one to stand beside you during the ceremonies, but fail to follow through with your spiritual life when needed. Perhaps, it is from my own experience: I wonder where my godparents are? Conveniently, it was my Uncle who was my godfather but somehow there does not seem to be any spiritual guidance or sharing between us after the day of confirmation. I guess luckily, I have always needed God around and search for Him throughout my stages of life and decisions.

In today’s reading from Exodus, Moses came down from the mountain with the tablets only to find the people worshipping a false god. Look into ourselves and reflect, we have to be reminded constantly the faults which we have every week. We get so caught up with the worldly things and worries that we find ourselves adoring the false things in life. We are similar to the Israelites, looking in the direction, which gives us temporary comfort, and not trusting God enough. God wrote our names in His book and as a loving Father and creator, He will not just blot us out from His book that easily. It has always been us who walk out on Him.

Are you a godparent to someone? Perhaps you should begin to consider getting in touch with your godchild and build a good relationship with God centred in it. I hope that some day, I will be able to be a godfather to someone and leading that child closer to God, to face the troubles and problems, as well as to be able to give thanks, knowing that it is God who is working in each and every one of us every moment. When the going gets tough, ask not to be blot out from His book, but pray and get inspired about what we can do so our Father will remember our good actions in the book instead.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Austin Leong)

Prayer:  O loving Father, please guide all godparents with the spirituality they need so as to bring your children closer to you

Thanksgiving: Be thankful for what God has provided for us. Trust God even for those things, which do not present themselves the way we would like it to be.