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Building on Solid Rock – Thursday of the First Week of Advent
Thursday of the First Week of Advent
Matthew 7:21, 24-27
Jesus said to his disciples: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.” Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”
Opening Prayer: Lord, I believe in your loving presence. You are the solid rock on which my very existence depends, and I know that without you, I can do nothing. Keep me close to you, oh Lord, for the wind and rain of the world buffet me. Lord, teach me to do your will, to build my life on your solid rock.
- God’s Will, A Solid Rock: Christ reminds us that not all who make pious invocations will enter the Kingdom. It may sound cliche, but without a solid foundation on the rock of God’s will, the storms of the world blow away any conviction or good work we may intend to do. Let’s make sure that when we say, “Lord, Lord,” our piety is authentic and is reflected in lives built on the rock of Christ.
- Knowing God’s Will: How can we know Christ’s will? The answer is already given to us in this passage: by listening to his words. We hear Christ’s words above all when we encounter him in the Eucharistic sacrifice, but we can also hear him speaking to us through a wise spiritual director, in our friends and family, and even in those younger than us! Lord, give us ears to hear your will as you speak your Word to us.
- Christ My Life: “When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory”(cf. Colossians 3:4). Saint Paul calls Christ “our life” since he ought to be the center and foundation of all our words, thoughts, and actions. He invites me to have a personal and intimate relationship with him. I build my house on rock when I dedicate myself to spending quality time with the Lord in daily prayer, regardless of how the winds blow and buffet me to distraction. “We must have a determined determination to never give up prayer,” advises Saint Teresa of Avila
Conversing with Christ: Lord Jesus, the storms of the world continue to rage outside, but I trust in your strength, not in my own. You and your will are all that matter to me. As long as I am close to you, all things that befall me happen for my good. Thank you, Lord.
Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will recommit to spending quality time with you in daily prayer.
For Further Reflection: Saint Teresa of Avila’s treatise on prayer: The Way of Perfection.
Br. Brian Flanagan, LC, is a seminarian studying classical humanities with the Legionaries of Christ in Cheshire, Connecticut. He is from Atlanta, Georgia, and has been in the Legion since 2016. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.