10 Minute Daily Retreat - Read the Daily Gospel with a prayerful heart.
By Louise Crossley (No.149)
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 19:3-12
Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”
“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”
Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”
The disciples said to him, “If this is the situation between a husband and wife, it is better not to marry.
Jesus replied, “Not everyone can accept this word, but only those to whom it has been given. For there are eunuchs who were born that way, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by others—and there are those who choose to live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.”
My wise and beautiful friend, Susanne, has given me Mathew 19:3-12 to reflect upon. I’m a Catholic divorced woman so it has been somewhat confronting to ponder on what Jesus has stated here.
Also, I was a little concerned at first of using this arena to justify divorce in order to feel better about my situation, but after some praying this is what I have to offer...
On the 6th of June I watched an episode of 60 Minutes named: Fatal Distraction. It was about an unimaginable situation where parents forget their babies in hot cars and they die. Apparently, it is comparable to losing your mobile phone, in that the tragedy is caused by the distractions of life.
Whether due to a particularly busy day or a change in routine, according to 60 Minutes experts, this terrible thing can happen to anyone. So I wonder if the theory of Fatal Distraction could apply to today’s Gospel?
I’m not entirely sure how to stay in a marriage if it is killing your spirit – I tried for 21 years and could not any longer. But, I do believe that if we are not Fatally Distracted, by the ideals of marriage – and rush into it, or the desire of financial freedom – and work too hard when in a marriage, or romantic movies – and expect too much from the marriage, perhaps what Jesus wants from us would be more manageable.
I think perhaps the key to living this Gospel is to be present in every moment and know that one decision has a dominoes affect to many more.
So focus on your life every moment you live it and pray every day that you will not experience the irreversible and tragic: Fatal Distraction.
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.
Next Reflection: Susanne Timpanih, 2015