Reading and meditation on the Word of God on Monday of the 32nd week in ordinary time, November 8, 2021.

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"For wisdom is a kindly spirit and a sure observer of his heart. The Spirit of the Lord fills the world. Reading and meditation on the Word of God on Monday of the 32nd week in ordinary time, November 8, 2021. Reading is delivered by Fhesty Maria Faustin and meditation is delivered by Frins Halim from Catholic Religious High School Saint John Paul II Seminary Labuan Bajo, Indonesia. Wisdom 1: 1-7; Rs psalm 139: 1-3.4-6.7-8.9-10; Luke 17: 1-6."


Our meditation today has the theme: We Can Avoid Scandal. According to our readings today, there are two forces that affect our lives. The Book of Wisdom points to God's wisdom obtained by those who obey God, while the power of the evil always intends to block the way for the people to acquire the wisdom of God. The Gospel of Luke points to the temptations that lead us into sin, while the power of faith is the source of love that sustains our lives.

In principle if we side with God's wisdom or the power of faith, we are able to avoid scandalous deeds. The word “temptation” in Greek language is called scandalon, which we normally understand as scandal. Its original meaning is something like a trap or stumbling block that causes others to fall and sin. The scriptures on many occasions remind us of the traps or deceptions that keep people away from God and lead them into sin. Psalm 141.9 says: Deliver me from the trap they have laid to trap me, and from the deceit of the wicked. Similar to this, the first Letter of John says: Whoever loves his brother or sister lives in the light, in that person there is no stumbling block.

We must be able to avoid scandal. Jesus had clearly said that his followers should not cause any of the little ones among us to fall into sin. The littles ones such as the simple, the sick, children and young people, the poor, the uneducated or the abandoned are indeed always the victims. Their lives are already difficult physically, mentally and spiritually, they should not be made more miserable. The people who trouble them with their scandals are those who have power, intelligence and influence. Hopefully you do not belong to this group.

So here is a piece of advice to avoid scandalous deeds that deserves our attention. Those who are educated, powerful and influential, should not become bad or evil examples that can eventually lead others to sin. Priests or religious persons should not be a scandal to the faithful or members of the Church. Parents should not be a scandal to their children. The teacher should not be a scandal to the students. An elder brother should not be a scandal to the younger siblings. There are many other examples. Ironically, we should admit in our reality today, those who commit scandals are precisely those who must be examples or role models of goodness and truth to the common people.

Let us avoid scandal of any kind, but we should give a good and true example for others.

Let's pray. In the name of the Father... O Father almighty, may we open ourselves sincerely to the counsel and guidance of Your Spirit, so that we may be renewed always and that we may participate in renewing this world from all forms of scandal. Hail Mary full of grace... In the name of the Father...