When the magi had departed, behold,
the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said,
“Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt,
and stay there until I tell you.
Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him.”
Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night
and departed for Egypt.
He stayed there until the death of Herod,
that what the Lord had said through the prophet might be fulfilled,
Out of Egypt I called my son.
When Herod realized that he had been deceived by the magi,
he became furious.
He ordered the massacre of all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity
two years old and under,
in accordance with the time he had ascertained from the magi.
Then was fulfilled what had been said through Jeremiah the prophet:
A voice was heard in Ramah,
sobbing and loud lamentation;
Rachel weeping for her children,
and she would not be consoled,
since they were no more.
I will be out of traveling until January 5, so I am not sure if I will be able to publish the thoughts for the day during that time. Please be assured of my prayers for all of you and please pray for me.
Today the Church remembers the Holy Innocents, the children who were slaughtered by King Herod because he was trying to kill the child Jesus, whom Herod perceived to be a threat to his throne. We see how pride, envy and jealousy can lead to horrible results in life.
We also see in this Gospel how God sent an angel to Joseph to lead his family to Egypt to avoid Herod’s evil plan. Do you see how quickly Joseph responded to the angel? They left in the middle of the night. This speaks to Joseph’s contemplative heart. He listened attentively for the Lord and quickly responded. This is a great example for all of us to spend time each day in quiet prayer, listening for the voice of God. When we get to know God personally, we know and trust His voice speaking to us in many and varied ways – in dreams, in our heart, through other people, etc.
Am I cultivating a contemplative heart by praying each day, listening for the voice of God?
Am I ready to respond quickly to the Lord’s voice?
Is there pride, jealousy or envy in my life that is causing me to act unkindly or to use harsh words with others?
Do I trust the Lord’s plan for me?
May we also pray for the innocent children that are killed every day through abortion, starvation, abuse and neglect. The Lord has a special place in His heart for children. May we do all that we can to protect them, guide them and teach them about God.
Have a blessed day!
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