First reading Jeremiah 38:4-6,8-10

‘Do not let the prophet die’

The king’s leading men spoke to the king. ‘Let Jeremiah be put to death: he is unquestionably disheartening the remaining soldiers in the city, and all the people too, by talking like this. The fellow does not have the welfare of this people at heart so much as its ruin.’ ‘He is in your hands as you know,’ King Zedekiah answered ‘for the king is powerless against you.’ So they took Jeremiah and threw him into the well of Prince Malchiah in the Court of the Guard, letting him down with ropes. There was no water in the well, only mud, and into the mud Jeremiah sank.
  Ebed-melech came out from the palace and spoke to the king. ‘My lord king,’ he said ‘these men have done a wicked thing by treating the prophet Jeremiah like this: they have thrown him into the well, where he will die.’ At this the king gave Ebed-melech the Cushite the following order: ‘Take three men with you from here and pull the prophet Jeremiah out of the well before he dies.’
 
 

Responsorial Psalm 39(40):2-4,18

Lord, come to my aid!
 
I waited, I waited for the Lord
  and he stooped down to me;
  he heard my cry.
 
He drew me from the deadly pit,
  from the miry clay.
He set my feet upon a rock
  and made my footsteps firm.
 
He put a new song into my mouth,
  praise of our God.
Many shall see and fear
  and shall trust in the Lord.
 
As for me, wretched and poor,
  the Lord thinks of me.
You are my rescuer, my help,
  O God, do not delay.

 

Second reading Hebrews 12:1-4

We should keep running steadily in the race we have started

With so many witnesses in a great cloud on every side of us, we too, then, should throw off everything that hinders us, especially the sin that clings so easily, and keep running steadily in the race we have started. Let us not lose sight of Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection: for the sake of the joy which was still in the future, he endured the cross, disregarding the shamefulness of it, and from now on has taken his place at the right of God’s throne. Think of the way he stood such opposition from sinners and then you will not give up for want of courage. In the fight against sin, you have not yet had to keep fighting to the point of death.
 
 

Gospel Luke 12:49-53

How I wish it were blazing already!

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already! There is a baptism I must still receive, and how great is my distress till it is over!
  ‘Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. For from now on a household of five will be divided: three against two and two against three; the father divided against the son, son against father, mother against daughter, daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law, daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.’
 
 
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The cost of staying faithful to Jesus and His ways

“Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you,
but rather division”. It seems strange that Jesus speaks about bringing
division, not peace. Jesus, a lover of peace, does not come with the
specific purpose of bringing division. Instead, He is saying that division
is the consequence of His presence.
 
Jesus reminds us today that if we are truly committed to following Him
and living our lives according to His values of honesty, truth, justice and
peace, we will face opposition, even from our family members. We must
know that people will not always agree with our choices when we align
ourselves with the values of the Kingdom of God. Today, let us pray that
we may never lose sight of Jesus and can follow Him faithfully and
courageously to the end.
 
Reflection question:
Will I remain firm in my following of Jesus even in the midst of
challenges?
 
 
Acknowledgment: Reflections are based on “Prayer for Living: The Word of God for Daily Prayer Year C” by Sr Sandra Seow FMVD.