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Daily Journal (Quiet Time)

Daily Journal (Quiet Time)

  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand , The Commemoration of the Departure of St. Pelagia

       

    (Philippians 3: 7- 14)

    “But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

     


    The goal of the devil is to blind our eyes from the truths. He deceived mankind since his first conversation with Eve about the tree of knowledge and the beguiled Eve found the tree to be pleasant to the eyes. From then till now, man is deluded seeing the lies as truths and the false as correct. However, this time in year is when we come to God in repentance of our weaknesses, trusting that only He can heal us. The grace of God gives us the desire and the capability to go to Him for more of His love. His grace allows us to unshackle the chains of the past and decide to take advantage of the present time by asking for true change in our lives. It is easy to be frustrated by the past, but we resist this with St. Paul saying “I reach forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

     


    How do you think the devil can blind your eyes from seeing the truth about your life and about God? List things that you think are misleading your path towards God and put it into prayer.

     


    Dear Lord Jesus,

    As You have opened St. Pelagia’s eyes for her to see how much precious You are more than the treasures of the earth, I thank You for opening my eyes to know where I am in my life now. Once she received the faith and was baptized, You guided her to be fully Yours. Forgetting the fame and false richness of the world, she indeed counted all as loss for the sake of knowing You when she went to Jerusalem and became a celibate for 40 years. Lord, I come to You with the frustrations of the past that wasted all my energy and my life. Enlighten my understanding towards the scriptures to know that I can find new life in You and in Your word. Amen.

     


  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand

     

    (2 Timothy 1: 3-7)

    “I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also. Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”


    The bible is full of stories that started with failure, but ended with victory when the Savior came to save and when saints surrendered their will to the Savior. O my soul, many years have passed and you are still stuck in the same pit of failure and fear. Wake up! Shake off the past and move forward towards the true light --- Christ the Savior. Our fathers attained the true faith by continually looking up to Christ regardless of how many times they fell, which prevented the devil from filling their hearts with doubts and inner turmoil. The fathers seized the grace given to them and were not only filled and overflowed with it, but were also cleansed and restored.


    Sitting in the presence of God, identify what fears hold you from continuing your path in faith with God to fulfill something you gave up on doing in the past.


    My Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ,


    I have been crippled with fear and failure for many years, but I thank you for giving me hope every day. I doubted your love because of the many lies that are rooted deep in me for so long, but You continued to encourage me through Your word that is full of Spirit and life. Please break the chains of lies and doubts and shine Your light inside of my darkened heart. Amen.



  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand

      


    God is never happy with the sea-shore level of my relationship with Him. He wants to take me to the deep. He wants to prepare me for the calling He has for me. All that I need to say is, “Master, we toiled the whole night, and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” This is my chance to accept the invitation to go to the deep with Him, trusting that He will give more than I need, so I can forsake all and follow Him.


    When did you hear God inviting you to go deeper with Him? Did you accept His invitation? If not, what do you think you were afraid of?


    Lord,


    I thank You for the invitation to take me to a deeper level with You, where You lead my steps to forsake all and follow You. I thank You for the hope You are giving me. You gave Peter more fish than he ever caught and it made him confess of being sinful and not deserving to have You on his boat. I am confessing my weak faith and hoping to find favor in Your eyes to lift me up from my failure. Amen.

     

    Vespers

    Psalm 37:3-4 

    Trust in the LORD, and do good;
    Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
    Delight yourself also in the LORD,
    And He shall give you the desires of your heart.


    Mt 17:24-27

    When they had come to Capernaum, those who received the temple tax came to Peter and said, "Does your Teacher not pay the temple tax?"
    He said, "Yes."
    And when he had come into the house, Jesus anticipated him, saying, "What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take customs or taxes, from their sons or from strangers?"
    Peter said to Him, "From strangers."
    Jesus said to him, "Then the sons are free. Nevertheless, lest we offend them, go to the sea, cast in a hook, and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth, you will find a piece of money; take that and give it to them for Me and you."


    Matins

     Psalm63:6 ; Psalm 63:3 ; Psalm 63:4 
    When I remember You on my bed,
    I meditate on You in the night watches. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
    My lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live;
    I will lift up my hands in Your name.


    Mk 16:2-8
    Very early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen. And they said among themselves, "Who will roll away the stone from the door of the tomb for us?" But when they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away--for it was very large. And entering the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a long white robe sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed.
    But he said to them, "Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him. But go, tell His disciples--and Peter--that He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him, as He said to you."
    So they went out quickly and fled from the tomb, for they trembled and were amazed. And they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.


    Liturgy

    Pauline Epistle

    2Cor 4:1-end ; 2Cor 5:1-15
    Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God. But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus' sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed-- always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus' sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you.
    And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, "I believed and therefore I spoke," we also believe and therefore speak, knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God. Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked. For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life. Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
    So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.


    Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.
    For we do not commend ourselves again to you, but give you opportunity to boast on our behalf, that you may have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart. For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; or if we are of sound mind, it is for you. For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.


    Catholic Epistle

    Jas 3:13-end ; Jas 4:1-6 
    Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, "The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously"?
    But He gives more grace. Therefore He says:
    "God resists the proud,
    But gives grace to the humble."


    Acts

    Acts 14:24-end ; Acts 15:1-3 
    And after they had passed through Pisidia, they came to Pamphylia. Now when they had preached the word in Perga, they went down to Attalia. From there they sailed to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work which they had completed.
    Now when they had come and gathered the church together, they reported all that God had done with them, and that He had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles. So they stayed there a long time with the disciples. And certain men came down from Judea and taught the brethren, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved." Therefore, when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and dispute with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas and certain others of them should go up to Jerusalem, to the apostles and elders, about this question.
    So, being sent on their way by the church, they passed through Phoenicia and Samaria, describing the conversion of the Gentiles; and they caused great joy to all the brethren.


    Synaxarium

    The Departure of St. Eumenius, the Seventh Pope of the See of St. Mark.
    • The Eclipse of the Sun in the Year 958 A.M.
    • The Commemoration of St. Simon (Simeon) the Bishop.


    Psalm 66:1-2,4 
    Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth!
    Sing out the honor of His name;
    Make His praise glorious.


    Lk 5:1-11 
    So it was, as the multitude pressed about Him to hear the word of God, that He stood by the Lake of Gennesaret, and saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets. Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon's, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat.
    When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, "Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch."
    But Simon answered and said to Him, "Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net." And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!"
    For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken; and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men." So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him.



  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand

        


    (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

    "But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power."


    Some of the descriptions in this passage seem to be the kind that can easily be observed and identified. But in this generation we live in, they are disguised. Pride comes in the name of justice, thankfulness visits us through ambition, unholiness speaks for the sake of practicality… and our form of godliness is far from our sight. All of that is because God still does not reign fully in us. But if we are willing to open the dark rooms inside us, He will also be willing to come and not only reign, but unite us with Him in each aspect.


    What does verse 5, "having a form of godliness but denying its power", mean to you?


    Jesus,


    I confess, I am a lover of pleasures —rest, glory from men, satisfaction to my flesh— and I seek after all of it. But I come to You once more because, even though I stand weak against myself, I still know that my place is to be with You. I no longer want to deny the godliness that You have called me to become. Please give me the perception to walk towards You instead of my earthly pleasures. Amen.



  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand The Commemoration of the Departure of St. Paul of Tamouh

     

     

    (Titus 2:11-14)

    "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works."


    In order for the Lord to come and reign fully within us, we are taught to avoid external things: bad environments, unhealthy companies, damaging scenes and sights, etc… And what is even harder is to resist our own will, our needs (or how we are used to fulfilling those needs) and our very nature. In this area within is where our real battle takes place with all its dimensions. We are called to stand against ourselves in ways that seem to be beyond human capacity — and, in fact they are, for it is He who calls and supports.


    What inner state of yours is becoming exceedingly apparent to you during this time? How can you take a stand against it?


    Dear Lord,


    St. Paul of Tamouh had such a big desire to live outside of himself in order to find You in a very specific way. He went to extreme measures as he was simply following his heart and love for You, and You appeared to him in a way that fed his whole being. I wish to have this necessity to forsake myself and find You. Please uncover this desire within me. Amen.



  • The Commemoration of the Departure of theRighteous Hannah, the Prophetess Mother of Samuel,the Propphet

                 

    (1 Samuel 1:8-18)

    Hannah’s Vow Then Elkanah her husband said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? And why is your heart grieved? Am I not better to you than ten sons?” So Hannah arose after they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat by the doorpost of the tabernacle of the Lord. And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed to the Lord and wept in anguish. Then she made a vow and said, “O Lord of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and no razor shall come upon his head.” And it happened, as she continued praying before the Lord, that Eli watched her mouth.Now Hannah spoke in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli thought she was drunk. So Eli said to her, “How long will you be drunk? Put your wine away from you!” But Hannah answered and said, “No, my lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor intoxicating drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord.“Do not consider your maidservant a wicked woman, for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief I have spoken until now.” Then Eli answered and said, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have asked of Him.” And she said, “Let your maidservant find favor in your sight.” So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.


    With a vow, we become one with a spouse, and with a vow, we receive a new life for our children. What about the vows that are for the matters of the heart? The vow of citizenship for the Kingdom of the Divine— Promising to chase after it, to desire it and lean towards it. Failure often frightens us from searching and taking those vows. But the vow will strengthen and enable those who search for it.


    What kind of vow is God looking for from you? What can you do to get yourself in a position to follow Him without turning back?


    Jesus,

    Give me the grace that the Righteous Hanna had, which enabled her to seek fulfillment for her needs from You, seek Your desires for her, and take the vow of the heart to follow You, in any state, as You lead. Guide me to walk in the way of righteousness that led her to hear Your voice in her heart, and give me the strength to answer whenever You call. Amen.

     

     

     

  • Repent for the Kingdom of God from Within is at Hand

     

    (Psalm 18:1-3)

    I will love You, O Lord, my strength.The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised;
    So shall I be saved from my enemies.


    Jesus, Emmanuel, The Great I Am… Many are the names for the one who redeemed us. But there is one role of His that He prefers above all. A title that yanks on His heart and compels His compassion. A role that stirs His sympathy and draws His love. It is His office as Savior that He seeks to carry out. So then, Why does it not feel this way when I try to look to Him in my time of defeat? The feeling of rejection from God is a lie that has the weight of a mighty stone and clarity of the darkest night. We suffer from it without recognition and reap the consequences of its paralysis.


    Think of that time when you tried and argued with yourself to stand before God as you should in your time of need, but just couldn’t. Why were you not able to move? What where your feelings towards God during that time?


    My Savior,
    Truly You are a Savior — specifically made for me and all my parts in distress. Break any wrong perception about You within me. If I can’t come to You, where will I go? If I can't come to You, how will I ever heal? Lord, if I can’t come to You, I simply won’t make it. Please come, please come and rid me of this hindrance. Amen.



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