Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
We give thanks to God for your steadfast following of Oxygen.
As we enter into the Paschal Mystery of the Church, we invite our readers who want to help contribute a reflection to come forward.
The following readings are available for reflection:
1st Reading + Responsorial Psalm
2nd Reading + Responsorial Psalm
3rd Reading + Responsorial Psalm
4th Reading + Responsorial Psalm
5th Reading + Responsorial Psalm
6th Reading + Responsorial Psalm
7th Reading + Responsorial Psalm
Epistle + Responsorial Psalm
This is a good time for you to share with our readers the joys you have had in reading Oxygen. Do drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org who will be in touch with you on how to proceed.
Oxygen Core Team
4 March 2018
God spoke all these words. He said, ‘I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
‘You shall have no gods except me.
‘You shall not make yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything in heaven or on earth beneath or in the waters under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God and I punish the father’s fault in the sons, the grandsons, and the great-grandsons of those who hate me; but I show kindness to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
‘You shall not utter the name of the Lord your God to misuse it, for the Lord will not leave unpunished the man who utters his name to misuse it.
‘Remember the sabbath day and keep it holy. For six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath for the Lord your God. You shall do no work that day, neither you nor your son nor your daughter nor your servants, men or women, nor your animals nor the stranger who lives with you. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth and the sea and all that these hold, but on the seventh day he rested; that is why the Lord has blessed the sabbath day and made it sacred.
‘Honour your father and your mother so that you may have a long life in the land that the Lord your God has given to you.
‘You shall not kill.
‘You shall not commit adultery.
‘You shall not steal.
‘You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
‘You shall not covet your neighbour’s house. You shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or his servant, man or woman, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is his.’
1 Corinthians 1:22-25
During his stay in Jerusalem for the Passover many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he gave, but Jesus knew them all and did not trust himself to them; he never needed evidence about any man; he could tell what a man had in him.
“He could tell what a man had in him”
Growing up, one of my favourite comedies was ‘The Life of Brian’ by Monty Python. It was the story of a man named Brian, who was mistaken for the Messiah, being born just next door to Jesus.
A particularly memorable scene was one where a whole platoon of centurions stormed Brian’s residence in the hope of capturing him and his disciples. Caught unawares, the whole group scrambled for all available hiding places, including one behind the curtains and another pretending to be the lamp, lamp-shade included! It was hilarious because it was so obvious people were hiding in those spots!
What made the scene particularly funny was the fact that all the centurions failed to spot any of the disciples, including those who were hiding in plain sight! What amazing humour!
In today’s Gospel, Jesus “never needed evidence about any man; he could tell what a man in him”. I wonder if our efforts to conceal ourselves from our God are as funny as the Monty Python movie. Despite our best efforts to keep our actions and thoughts in the dark, I am sure they appear as bright as day.
Because our God can see us clearly for who we are, and what we are capable of, He gives us the 10 commandments. Like children, we rebel and think that we are beyond rules. Yet, like children, it often turns out that the commandments will keep us along the straight and narrow path to eternal life.
Let us be humble and continue to allow ourselves to be led by our God. We need to remember that no matter what, God loves us and loves us completely, warts, imperfections and all.
(Today’s Oxygen by Paul Wee)
Prayer: Lord, help us depend on You and to trust in You completely. We pray that we will exercise our free will responsibly and with love, in line with Your commandments for us.
Thanksgiving: Thank You Father, for allowing us to make our own choices. Thank You for being there, whatever the circumstances.