Daily Gospel – Saturday, June 22, 2024 – Matthew 6,24-34 – Catholic Bible

First Reading (2 Chronicles 24,17-25)

Reading of the Second Book of Chronicles.

After Jehoiada’s death, the leaders of Judah came to prostrate themselves before King Joash, who, attracted by their flattery, allowed himself to be carried away by them. The leaders of Judah abandoned the temple of the Lord, the God of their fathers, and worshiped sacred trunks and carved images, bringing divine wrath upon Judah and Jerusalem because of this crime. The Lord sent them prophets so that they would convert to him. However, no matter how much they protested, they did not want to listen to him. Then the spirit of God came upon Zacharias, the son of Jehoiada the priest, and he stood before the people and said, “Thus says God: Why do you transgress the commandments of the Lord? Lord, he will also abandon you.” But they conspired against Zechariah and stoned him to death by order of the king, in the courtyard of the temple of the Lord. King Joash did not remember the good that Jehoiada, the prophet’s father, had done for him, and he killed his son. Zechariah, as he died, said: “May the Lord see and do justice!” After a year, the Syrian army marched against Joash, invaded Judah and Jerusalem, massacred the leaders of the people, and sent all the war booty to the king of Damascus. In fact, the Syrian army came with few men, but the Lord gave a huge army into their hands, because Judah had abandoned the Lord, the God of their fathers. So the Syrians brought justice against Joash. When they withdrew, leaving him seriously ill, his men conspired against him, to avenge the son of the priest Jehoiada, and killed him in his bed. He died and was buried in the city of David, but not in the tomb of the kings.

– Word of the Lord.

– Thank God.

Gospel (Matthew 6,24-34)

— Proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew.

— Glory to you, Lord.

At that time, Jesus said to his disciples: “No one can serve two masters: for either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be faithful to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. That is why I I tell you: do not worry about your life, about what you will eat or drink; nor about your body, about what you will wear. After all, life is not worth more than food, and the body is worth more. than clothing? Look at the birds of the heavens: they do not sow, nor reap, nor gather into storehouses. Yet your Father who is in heaven feeds them. life itself, just because you worry about it? And why are you worried about clothing? Look at how the lilies of the field grow: they neither work nor spin. his glory, he was never clothed like one of them. Now, if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today exists and tomorrow is burned in the oven, will he not do much more for you, people of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat? What are we going to drink? How are we going to dress?’ The pagans are the ones who look for these things. Your Father, who is in heaven, knows that you need all of this. On the contrary, seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you in addition. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will have its worries! Every day has enough of its own problems.”

— Word of Salvation.

— Glory to you, Lord.

Reflecting the Word of God

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, as we gather today to reflect on God’s Word, we are invited to delve deeply into the readings of 2 Chronicles and the Gospel of Matthew. These passages challenge us to examine our priorities and trust fully in divine providence. Let’s start with a reflection on our own daily lives. How often do we feel overwhelmed by everyday worries and anxieties? Whether it’s financial concerns, health, relationships, or other responsibilities, these worries can easily keep us from the true peace and joy that God desires for us. Today’s Scriptures offer a path to a fuller life trusted in God’s hands.

In the first reading of 2 Chronicles 24:17-25, we find the story of King Joash, who began his reign well, but ended up straying from his fidelity to God. After the death of the priest Jehoiada, who had been his advisor, Joash was influenced by corrupt leaders who led him to abandon the temple of the Lord and worship idols. This aroused divine wrath and brought disaster upon the kingdom of Judah. God sent prophets to warn them, but they did not listen. One of the prophets, Zechariah, son of Jehoiada, was stoned to death by order of Joash himself. This tragic story shows us the danger of moving away from God and allowing ourselves to be influenced by those who do not share our values and faith.

Let’s imagine Joash’s kingdom as a garden. In the beginning, when it was cared for by the priest Jehoiada, this garden flourished with beautiful flowers and abundant fruits. But when Joash turned away from God’s ways and allowed weeds and pests to invade the garden, it quickly became barren and full of thorns. So too, our lives can flourish when we follow God’s ways, but they can become barren and desolate when we turn away from Him.

In contrast to this gloomy reading, the Gospel of Matthew 6:24-34 brings us a message of hope and confidence. Jesus tells us: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and riches.” He invites us to place our trust in God above all things and not to worry excessively about the material needs of life. “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; nor about your body, what you will wear.”

Let’s think of our life as a journey. On a journey, we need a compass to guide us. For us, that compass is our faith in God. When we trust in divine providence and seek the Kingdom of God first, all other things will be added to us. Jesus uses beautiful images of nature to teach us about trust in God. He reminds us of the birds of the air, which neither sow nor reap, but are fed by the heavenly Father. He also speaks of the lilies of the field, which grow effortlessly and are clothed with a beauty that surpasses that of Solomon in all his glory.

These images invite us to reflect on simplicity and trust. Birds and lilies do not worry about tomorrow; they live in the present and trust in God’s providence. Likewise, we are called to live with a calm and confident heart, knowing that God cares for us. He knows what we need before we even ask.

But how can we apply this trust in God in our daily lives? Firstly, it is important to identify what is competing for our heart. What has been our “lord”? Is it the incessant desire for financial security, professional success or the approval of others? Jesus calls us to serve God, and God alone. This means we must reevaluate our priorities and place our relationship with Him above all other concerns.

Let’s consider a practical example. Imagine a young professional who works hard to achieve success in his career. He spends long hours at the office, often sacrificing time with family, friends, and even God. His mind is constantly worried about goals, deadlines and competition. This young professional is, in a way, serving two masters: God and riches.

Now, let’s imagine a change in perspective. This young man decides to put his faith into practice and trust God more. He begins to dedicate time daily to prayer and reading the Scriptures, seeks to better balance his professional and personal life, and begins to participate more actively in his faith community. In doing so, he begins to experience a peace and joy that was previously unknown to him. He realizes that by putting God first, all other areas of his life begin to align more harmoniously.

Furthermore, Jesus encourages us not to worry about tomorrow. “Each day is enough for your evil.” This does not mean that we should be irresponsible or negligent, but rather that we should live one day at a time, trusting that God will provide for our needs. Anxiety about the future robs us of peace and the ability to live fully in the present.

A practical way to apply this is through daily gratitude. At the end of each day, we can take a few minutes to thank God for all the blessings we have received, big and small. This helps us recognize God’s hand in our lives and strengthen our trust in Him.

It is also important to seek God’s wisdom and discernment in our decisions. We can ask for the guidance of the Holy Spirit to show us how to best use our talents and resources to serve the Kingdom of God. This may mean making difficult decisions, such as changing careers, downsizing your lifestyle, or dedicating more time to community service. But when we trust in divine providence, we know that these decisions will lead us to a fuller life aligned with God’s will.

Finally, we are called to live as witnesses of trust in God. In a world full of worries and anxieties, our peace and confidence can be a powerful testimony of God’s love and faithfulness. We can be like beacons of hope to those around us, showing through our lives that by seeking first the Kingdom of God, all other things are added to us.

Let us now have a moment of silence to reflect on these readings. Let us close our eyes and ask God for the grace to trust Him completely, to place our relationship with Him above all material concerns and to live each day with gratitude and peace.

Lord, we thank You for Your Word that guides and enlightens us. Help us to trust You with all our hearts, to place our lives in Your hands, and to seek first Your Kingdom. May we live as witnesses of Your love and Your providence, bringing light and hope to the world around us. Amen.

My brothers and sisters, as we leave here today, may we take with us the certainty of God’s care and providence. May God’s grace accompany us and give us strength to place our trust in Him in all areas of our lives. Remember Jesus’ words: “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” May we live this truth daily, being light and salt in the world, and bringing the peace and joy of the Lord to everyone around us. Amen.