LISTEN & RECHARGE

 

“HE FIRST LOVED US”

EPISODE 103, 17 NOVEMBER 2018 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

In his first letter, St. John meditates upon his experience that God has loved us first and that, as a result, we are able to love him. In today's prayer we try to follow his words so that the Holy Spirit can help us grow in the love that casts out fear and makes our souls beautiful in their pursuit of Him.

 

THE FIRE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

EPISODE 102 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

In order to believe in God's love for us, we need "proof" of a sort. What can I look to in order to know that He loves me? Many saints have found that answer looking at the Cross. This is where Jesus shows me not only that he loves me, but what that love means. However, in order for that not to remain a dry consideration, we need the fire of the Holy Spirit to ignite us with the faith that Jesus' action on the Cross was actually about me. This is what we pray about today.

 

DEATH, HOPE, AND THE RESURRECTION THAT AWAITS US

EPISODE 101 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Today we contemplate not only the reality of our own death, but the hope that awaits us: Jesus' return to renew the world and resurrect us into his own Life. Christian faith is a faith of hope precisely because it looks to the Resurrection. We do well to pray about these events that await us so that we can live filled with a certain hope in this present time - a hope that enables us to passionately love this world of ours.

 

“BE NOT AFRAID”: GOD’S FATHERLY LOVE

EPISODE 100 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

St. John Paul II famously challenged us to, "Be not afraid". Today we remember how we have been given the "authority" to become children of God and that this is why we should not be afraid of responding generously to the mission that was entrusted to us in our baptism.

 

LETTING JESUS TEACH US TO BE SECURE IN FOLLOWING HIM

EPISODE 99 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

In order to become secure and free persons who are able to face the challenges and possibilities of life, as infants and throughout our life we need other people who see our needs, make us safe, and can soothe us in distress. All of this contributes to makes us secure in ourselves and therefore able to launch out into the world. Here we pray about how Jesus wants us to have this same security and how we can see him seeing us, protecting us, and soothing us in Scripture. And all of this so that, through prayer, we can have the secure confidence of Christian witnesses and transmit this to others as well.

 

“IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD”

EPISODE 98 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Following the advice of St. Josemaria, we should seek the gift of a "prayer of quiet" - a prayer where it is God who speaks. In this meditation we turn to the prologue of the Gospel of John to practice preparing for such a prayer. Also, we consider how our contact with Jesus should lead us, as it did for Andrew and Philip, to bring others to "come and see" Jesus.

 

JESUS REVEALS GOD AS HE FORGIVES

EPISODE 97 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Jesus does not openly declare himself to be God, so much as show it through his actions. What he does reveals God, and his words shine light on those actions. Here we contemplate his encounter with a woman caught in adultery, and pray that we might have more confidence in coming towards Jesus ourselves.

 

CONTEMPLATING THE GOD WE SEE IN JESUS’ FACE

EPISODE 96 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

After the Resurrection, Thomas saw his friend Jesus and declared, "my Lord and my God". Who was the God he saw in Jesus' face? Who do we understand God to be, actually? Here we try to prayerfully consider what the entire Bible tells us about the God Thomas saw in Jesus' face, the God we call, Abba, Father.

 

“LORD, I AM NOT WORTHY THAT YOU SHOULD ENTER UNDER MY ROOF”

EPISODE 95 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Every time we participate in the Mass, right before receiving the Eucharist, we say: "Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed". As we know, these are the words that a Roman centurion spoke to Jesus, filled we faith. In order to more easily make them our own during the Mass, let's pray about that exchange between Jesus and the centurion. Our goal will be to live that moment in the Mass with greater faith and love.

 

LEARNING WITH PETER HOW TO BE GOD’S CHILD

EPISODE 94 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Jesus is a master teacher and just as he did with Peter, he wants us to see for ourselves what it means to live as children of the Father in the world. Here we contemplate Peter's struggle with whether or not the Temple tax should be paid and, through Jesus' reply, how Peter was taught to be a son.

 

BELIEVING IN JESUS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STORM

EPISODE 93 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

When circumstances around us - or within us - make it very hard to be award of God's presence, we have a chance to grow in faith. Like the Apostles, we can discover that even though it seems that Jesus is asleep, that he is not concerned, all the world is in his control. He is committed to us and seeks us out. Believing this, more than an emotional state in the moment, is the kind of spiritual maturity that we seek through prayer.

 

CONTEMPLATING JESUS' LOVE AS SALVATION

EPISODE 91 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

We can benefit greatly from contemplating a man who was freed from demonic possession by Jesus. His desire to look at Jesus, to listen to Jesus, and to let others know about him all result from his experience of "salvation". When we see evil in the world - and evil done by members of the Church - we need to respond with an even greater faith in Jesus' salvific love. He deals with evil and conquers it, and that victory is made available to each one of us through the Sacraments within the Church. We want to experience Jesus' love to the full, therefore we want to experience it as Salvation.

LIKE ZACCHEUS, JESUS SEEKS US OUT

EPISODE 92 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

In our Christian life, we are perhaps most aware of our own efforts. It's what we immediately perceive. Contemplating the story of Zaccheus, we might also notice most of all his efforts to, "see who Jesus was": avoiding the crowds by shamelessly climbing a tree. But the real story is that Jesus was the one seeking out Zaccheus. It is a very important discovery to find out how this is also true for each one of us. 

 

COURAGE TO WALK ON WATER

EPISODE 90 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Peter sees Jesus walking on the water, and guided by desire more than what he feels possible, asks Jesus to do something he's never done before. If we want to receive the gift of the Eucharist, we do well to foster that same faith, that same courage.

 

CHRISTIAN STRIVING IS A GIFT

EPISODE 89 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Jesus has made it very clear to us that following him is not an easy path. We must take up our cross each day and follow him. We need to re-discover, though, that paradoxically our joy resides precisely in the daily struggle, rather than in avoiding it. Here we try to pray with Jesus' parable of the talents to see more clearly how we might live this way.

LEARNING TO LISTEN TO JESUS

EPISODE 88 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Contemporary psychology has noted how vulnerable we are to "confirmation bias": the tendency to notice what we already expected more than what is actually before us. Pope Francis has often reminded us that God is a "God of surprises". To be surprised, and to receive what he wants to give us, we do well to be aware of  this bias in our relationship with God.

 

 

JESUS CALLS FORTH DESIRE

EPISODE 87 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Great saints like Augustine understood that the human soul is insatiable, that it hungers for the infinite. Desire, then, is not primarily a problem to be side-stepped, but a reality that must be answered. This answer is Jesus, who calls for our deepest desires so that he might answer them.

 

 

CONTEMPLATING JESUS

EPISODE 86 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

When we contemplate the life of Jesus, we are doing much more than considering a possible way of acting. We are peering into the inner life of God, his Mystery. What we want to glimpse in this time of prayer is how his essence is self-giving and how that floods with light our own lives and the choices we face.

 

SAINTS PETER & PAUL

EPISODE 85 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

Pillars of the Church, the feast of Sts Peter and Paul gives us the occasion to consider our own Christian vocation. In this time of prayer we seek to see in our own lives how their response to God’s calling can serve as a guide and a model for our own efforts to say “yes” to being called by name in Christ.

 

ST JOSEMARIA: GOD'S LOVE

EPISODE 84 // FR JUSTIN GILLESPIE

We contemplate the lives of the saints to discover the multiple ways in which the richness of God’s love comes close to us. The saints are not cold, perfect models that we admire from afar. Flesh and blood just like us, they should rather inspire us to have the courage to believe that a genuine life with God is not only possible, but deeply attractive.