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Heart prints

The story is told about a priest who was preaching about the vanity of money and worldly treasure. He kept shouting: “We bring nothing with us when we die! There is no money in heaven. People in heaven have no money!” The whole congregation was quiet, till a little girl whispered to her mother, loud enough for all to hear: “Mama, we’re in heaven already!”

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In today’s Gospel (Luke 6:17, 20-26), Jesus teaches us the Beatitudes, saying, “Blessed are you who are poor, for the kingdom of God is yours.” How consoling to hear that there is hope, there is value, and there is reward for those who are poor, hungry, sorrowful, and for those who are hated, persecuted, and insulted for the sake of the Gospel. “Behold, your reward will be great in heaven.”

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The Beatitudes are the “be attitudes” we should have with us in our hearts so that our journey in this life will be meaningful and spiritually fruitful. It is the Beatitudes that will bring us home to heaven. We are not yet in heaven, but we can have “be attitudes,” heart prints, that can make us experience heaven, now, in the midst of worldly travails and sorrows.

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BE STRONG. May we find God in the poverty and deprivation we encounter in life. May we not be discouraged by the selfishness and arrogance of the rich and powerful, confident that we have a treasure within which this world cannot give nor take away. “Blessed are you who are poor.”

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BE HOPEFUL. May we not give in to hopelessness and depression amidst the many trials, injustices, and outright lawlessness we encounter in this life, assured that God does not sleep, and that He will make a way, and will make all things beautiful in His time. “Blessed are you who are hungry, for you will be satisfied.”

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BE JOYFUL. May we experience that joy which this world cannot give nor take away, a joy so secure that we can speak our truth quietly and clearly. The joy of the Lord is our strength! “Blessed are you who are now weeping, for you will laugh.”

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BE PEACEFUL. May we experience peace when we are persecuted, ostracized, insulted, maligned, and derided for the sake of the Kingdom of God. We are disciples with a Master who Himself was persecuted and crucified because He told the truth and stood for goodness and righteousness. “Blessed are you when people hate you on account for the Son of Man … your reward will be great in heaven.”

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It’s not a perfect world we are living in. It is a cruel world in many ways. There is no perfect happiness in this life, but with the Beatitudes, we can rise above the imperfections, and find consolation and meaning because of the presence, power, and promise of our Risen Lord and Master. The Beatitudes remind us to focus on the Lord, not on the load.

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Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. Thank you dear friends who continue to treasure the heart, and who believe that matters of the heart still do matter in this very materialistic and pragmatic world.

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My Valentine prayer this year is that the Lord will help us choose leaders who not only have a good head, but also have a good heart, willing to really serve and sacrifice. Sana, Lord, sana all!

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May the Lord prosper the works of our hands, and increase the love in our hearts as we journey on. At the end of our journey, may we have little or no regrets that we loved too little, too late. HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY EVERYONE!

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A moment with our Lord:Thank you Lord, for you are a God who has a heart, and you see our hearts. Amen.

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TAGS: Gospel, Jerry M. Orbos, Moments
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