Shepherds of Christ  
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April 29, 2008

April 30th Holy Spirit Novena
Scripture selection is Day 4 Period I.

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April 29, 2008

 

 

                     If I measured my height — I would
                say, I am almost 5' 9" — who determined
                my height — some women can be short —
                say 4' 10", some women taller than me —
                why did God allow me to be 5' 9" and
                somebody else taller or shorter —

                    We take up space in the world — If a
                man is very tall he could bump his head on
                some lights, stairs that are going into a
                basement. Some men are much shorter and
                have no problem.

                    Women have bodies that can become
                pregnant and carry babies — Men have
                bodies that usually are muscular, carry
                the seed for a woman to conceive a baby —
                Men and women's bodies are different.

Genesis 1:27

God created man in the image of himself,
in the image of God he created him,
male and female he created them.

                    In studying the order in God's creation —
                we see the order at the time God flooded
                the earth — the time of Noah's ark — we
                see all the different species of animals and
                God told Noah that they should enter the
                ark two by two. God created all the animals —
                yesterday I saw a fish at a place of business —
                it was a "cow" fish — I couldn't believe it —
                Look at the life under the water of the ocean —
                Look at all the different species of trees — 

Genesis 1:27

God created man in the image of himself,
in the image of God he created him,
male and female he created them.

                    And they sinned and every creature, except Mary,
                that is conceived in the womb has original sin —

                    We see God's order — the sun comes up, the
                moon goes down, the stars and their consolations
                the order of the bones in the human body — my hand
                and fingers I use to write and play the piano —

                    God's light in all things He has created —
                purpose meaning — can you ever imagine
                heaven — do you know the justice of God?
                How God created us to give Him and others
                our love — How little two year olds so
                jealous and angry, angry faces, hitting,
                even lying to make themselves look like they
                didn't do anything wrong —

                    God has ordered the earth — given us the
                bodies of water and the land — put certain
                flowers in certain climates — allowed some
                places to be tropical, warm and others cold
                like Alaska — God has given us rain and
                sunshine, night and day, many different kinds of
                grasses — God has given man a heart to love and
                a mind to know and has elevated our knowing
                and loving capacity in baptism — God has given
                to us a sharing in His life in baptism
                because He loves us so much and He wants
                us to love Him.

                    God has allowed us to share in life in such
                beautiful ways — men and women to co-create
                children in marriage and live as a family of
                love — God tells us about the love of the Persons
                of the Trinity — Christian spirituality concerns
                itself with our total human life lived in Christ
                under the guidance of the Spirit. The spiritual
                life is the life in the Spirit.

                    The Spirit is present to the world, to the
                Christian community, to each of us individually.
                The Spirit is among us to deepen the Christic
                design upon man and his world, that
                Christic image which Christ has imprinted
                through His life, death and resurrection.
                The Spirit is present to make us more alive,
                to stir up deep desires which make us
                thirst for God, desires which make us
                more aware of what it means to love
                our fellow man.

 

Romans 6: 3-11

You cannot have forgotten that all of us, when we were baptised into Christ Jesus, were baptised into his death. So by our baptism into his death we were buried with him, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the Father’s glorious power, we too should begin living a new life. If we have been joined to him by dying a death like his, so we shall be by a resurrection like his: realising that our former self was crucified with him, so that the self which belonged to sin should be destroyed and we should be freed from the slavery of sin. Someone who has died, of course, no longer has to answer for sin.

But we believe that, if we died with Christ, then we shall live with him too. We know that Christ has been raised from the dead and will never die again. Death has no power over him any more. For by dying, he is dead to sin once and for all, and now the life that he lives is life with God. In the same way, you must see yourselves as being dead to sin but alive for God in Christ Jesus.

    

                The flood of Noah is a sign of the waters
                    of baptism.

                Through the Red Sea — God led Israel out of
                    slavery —

                We see John baptizing Jesus in the Jordan and
                    being anointed by the Spirit —
                    the voice of the Father is heard
                    "This is my beloved Son in whom
                        I am well pleased"

 

 

                Through the pierced Heart of Christ
                    as he hung on the cross —
                    the Church was born
                    water for baptism —
                    Blood for the Eucharist —

                Jesus told his disciples after the resurrection

  

Matthew 28: 16-20

Meanwhile the eleven disciples set out for Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had arranged to meet them. When they saw him they fell down before him, though some hesitated. Jesus came up and spoke to them. He said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go, therefore, make disciples of all nations; baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you. And look, I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.’

 

Romans 5: 5, 8-11

and a hope which will not let us down, because the love of God has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit which has been given to us.

So it is proof of God’s own love for us, that Christ died for us while we were still sinners. How much more can we be sure, therefore, that, now that we have been justified by his death, we shall be saved through him from the retribution of God. For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, how much more can we be sure that, being now reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. What is more, we are filled with exultant trust in God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have already gained our reconciliation.

 

Wisdom 1: 7

For the spirit of the Lord fills the world,
and that which holds everything together knows every word said.

 

1 Corinthians 5: 6-8

Your self-satisfaction is ill founded. Do you not realise that only a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough? Throw out the old yeast so that you can be the fresh dough, unleavened as you are. For our Passover has been sacrificed, that is, Christ; let us keep the feast, then, with none of the old yeast and no leavening of evil and wickedness, but only the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

 

Romans 8: 22-27

We are well aware that the whole creation, until this time, has been groaning in labour pains. And not only that: we too, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we are groaning inside ourselves, waiting with eagerness for our bodies to be set free. In hope, we already have salvation; in hope, not visibly present, or we should not be hoping -- nobody goes on hoping for something which is already visible. But having this hope for what we cannot yet see, we are able to wait for it with persevering confidence.

And as well as this, the Spirit too comes to help us in our weakness, for, when we do not know how to pray properly, then the Spirit personally makes our petitions for us in groans that cannot be put into words; and he who can see into all hearts knows what the Spirit means because the prayers that the Spirit makes for God’s holy people are always in accordance with the mind of God. 

   

John 7: 37-39 

On the last day, the great day of the festival, Jesus stood and cried out: 

    ‘Let anyone who is thirsty come to me! 
Let anyone who believes in me 
    come and drink! 

As scripture says, "From his heart shall flow streams of living water." ’ 

    He was speaking of the Spirit which those who believed in him were to receive; for there was no Spirit as yet because Jesus had not yet been glorified.

   

Acts 2: 1-11

When Pentecost day came round, they had all met together, when suddenly there came from heaven a sound as of a violent wind which filled the entire house in which they were sitting; and there appeared to them tongues as of fire; these separated and came to rest on the head of each of them. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak different languages as the Spirit gave them power to express themselves. 

    Now there were devout men living in Jerusalem from every nation under heaven, and at this sound they all assembled, and each one was bewildered to hear these men speaking his own language. They were amazed and astonished. ‘Surely,’ they said, ‘all these men speaking are Galileans? How does it happen that each of us hears them in his own native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; people from Mesopotamia, Judaea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya round Cyrene; residents of Rome— Jews and proselytes alike—Cretans and Arabs, we hear them preaching in our own language about the marvels of God.’ 

 

1 Corinthians 12: 3-7

Because of that, I want to make it quite clear to you that no one who says ‘A curse on Jesus’ can be speaking in the Spirit of God, and nobody is able to say, ‘Jesus is Lord’ except in the Holy Spirit.

There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit; there are many different ways of serving, but it is always the same Lord. There are many different forms of activity, but in everybody it is the same God who is at work in them all. The particular manifestation of the Spirit granted to each one is to be used for the general good.

 


                Sing: Come Holy Ghost

                The spiritual man is the one who is careful
                to submit his life to the guidance of the Spirit.
                But to submit one's life to the Spirit is to give
                Him the life God has created and redeemed.
                The spiritual man accepts his humanity
                as it really is but he at the same time
                gives it all, he submits to the breathing
                of the Spirit. (Fr. Carter)

 

 

                    The unspiritual man, on the other hand
                is one who lives not according to the Spirit,
                but according to the flesh.

  

Romans 8: 5-9

Those who are living by their natural inclinations have their minds on the things human nature desires; those who live in the Spirit have their minds on spiritual things. And human nature has nothing to look forward to but death, while the Spirit looks forward to life and peace, because the outlook of disordered human nature is opposed to God, since it does not submit to God's Law, and indeed it cannot, and those who live by their natural inclinations can never be pleasing to God. You, however, live not by your natural inclinations, but by the Spirit, since the Spirit of God has made a home in you. Indeed, anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

    

                Life according to the flesh is intellectual pride.
                It is working at one's profession for
                selfish motives. It is jealousy, sloth
                and unjust anger. It is thinking too much
                about one's self. It is a lack of
                concern for the human dignity of the other.
                Life in the flesh is cheating in business.
                It is a greed for power; it is racial
                hatred; it is a callous unconcern about
                social injustice. Life in the flesh, then,
                is life outside the redemptive plan.
                It is those actions and atitudes which refuse
                to be guided by the grace of Christ, by His
                Spirit. It is life which refuses to be
                Spirit — inspired. (Fr. Carter)

 

 

                St. Paul says  

Galatians 5: 16-17

    Instead, I tell you, be guided by the Spirit, and you will no longer yield to self–indulgence. The desires of self–indulgence are always in opposition to the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are in opposition to self–indulgence: they are opposites, one against the other; that is how you are prevented from doing the things that you want to.

  

                Life in the Spirit is response to God — It is
                a response to God's Self - Communication.

                Life in the Spirit is living the grace life
                which God bestows along with the gift
                of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This grace life
                is a sharing in God's own life. It is a
                sharing in His knowing and loving.

                We are called to love God and man and all
                creation with a new depth and intensity
                in a way impossible to the natural will
                unaided by grace. Personal relationships,
                then, are at the heart of life in the Spirit.
                In the Spirit we enter into deepened relationships
                with God and with one another.

     

Philippians 1: 21-24

Life to me, of course, is Christ, but then death would be a positive gain. On the other hand again, if to be alive in the body gives me an opportunity for fruitful work, I do not know which I should choose. I am caught in this dilemma: I want to be gone and to be with Christ, and this is by far the stronger desire—and yet for your sake to stay alive in this body is a more urgent need.

     

                We are to imitate Christ —

                In baptism we are called to put on Christ.

      

   

Romans 6: 3-11

You cannot have forgotten that all of us, when we were baptised into Christ Jesus, were baptised into his death. So by our baptism into his death we were buried with him, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the Father’s glorious power, we too should begin living a new life. If we have been joined to him by dying a death like his, so we shall be by a resurrection like his: realising that our former self was crucified with him, so that the self which belonged to sin should be destroyed and we should be freed from the slavery of sin. Someone who has died, of course, no longer has to answer for sin.

But we believe that, if we died with Christ, then we shall live with him too. We know that Christ has been raised from the dead and will never die again. Death has no power over him any more. For by dying, he is dead to sin once and for all, and now the life that he lives is life with God. In the same way, you must see yourselves as being dead to sin but alive for God in Christ Jesus.

  

Romans 8: 9, 11-13

You, however, live not by your natural inclinations, but by the Spirit, since the Spirit of God has made a home in you. Indeed, anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

and if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead has made his home in you, then he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your own mortal bodies through his Spirit living in you.

    So then, my brothers, we have no obligation to human nature to be dominated by it. If you do live in that way, you are doomed to die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the habits originating in the body, you will have life.

   

Mathew 11: 25-30

At that time Jesus exclaimed, ‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to little children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do. Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.

‘Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.’

 

Romans 8: 26-27

    And as well as this, the Spirit too comes to help us in our weakness, for, when we do not know how to pray properly, then the Spirit personally makes our petitions for us in groans that cannot be put into words; and he who can see into all hearts knows what the Spirit means because the prayers that the Spirit makes for God’s holy people are always in accordance with the mind of God.

  

  

 

        

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