10 Minute Daily Retreat - Read the Daily Gospel with a prayerful heart.
By Malcolm Davies (No.140)
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew 12:1-8
At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath; his disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, "Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath."
He said to them, "Have you not read what David did, when he was hungry, and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests?
Or have you not read in the law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath, and are guiltless?
I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. And if you had known what this means, `I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of man is lord of the Sabbath."
What does the commandment "keep holy the Sabbath" require of the followers of Jesus?
The day of rest was meant to be a time to remember and celebrate God's goodness in creating the universe and also the way he supported the chosen people through the Exodus journey.
Jesus then quotes from the prophet Hosea that he wants mercy and not sacrifice. What God is challenging the hearers, and also each one of us, is to be open to being messengers of God’s mercy and kindness to all we meet.
Pope Francis has challenged us to live a life of mercy and kindness with the statement: “You pray for the hungry. Then you feed them. That’s how prayer works”.
Do we honor the Lord in the way we treat the poor and marginalised?
Do we therefore honour God’s most wonderful creation? That of humanity, made in the image and likeness of God?
5 minutes: READ the text slowly.
REFLECT on a phrase or word that struck you.
SPEAK to God about your thoughts.
5 minutes: LISTEN to God speak to you.
RESPOND with a prayer that feels right for you.