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Luke 13:31-35

The Word of God

At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to Jesus, "Get away from here, for Herod wants to kill you." He said to them, "Go and tell that fox for me, 'Listen, I am casting out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I finish my work. Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed outside of Jerusalem.' Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! See, your house is left to you. And I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when you say, 'Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.'"

Luke 13:31-35
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • Jesus sees things as they are: he has no illusions about Herod; it is clear to him that Jerusalem has missed its opportunity. I ask God to help me to be able to see clearly, to recognise where there are influences in my life that draw me away from God. I pray that I may be able to recognise and resist temptation and keep my heart set on what God wants for me.
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    • I sit with Jesus as he makes his moving lament over Jerusalem. I enter into his image of a tender God who is compared to a caring and protective mother hen. Perhaps the ‘brood’ think that they have grown up and have no longer need of her. But we are in fact always totally in need of God to sustain us.
    • As your beloved child, God, I am willing to have you gather me under your wings! I place my neediness and vulnerabilities before you. I pray that I may always feel your sacred care in every aspect of my life and the lives of those I love.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • When Saint Ignatius suggests that we look on the world as God does, we might have this image of Jesus in mind as he looked on Jerusalem. I think of the cities and towns around me, of all the occupations and business of people and consider how God's heart yearns for them all.
    • Jesus accepted the cross not only in his crucifixion but in the many small choices that led him to Jerusalem. I pray that I may be ready to embrace God's will not only in the dramatic moments but also in the smaller and painful ones.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • The heart of Jesus finds its voice here: a voice of courage, facing down Herod the king as a fox, symbol of destructive cunning; and a voice of grief: he weeps over Jerusalem, mother city of his people. It is clear from these words that Jesus had preached in Jerusalem, but in vain: /You were not willing./ Jesus longs for us, but will not force us.
    • Jesus wants to gather the people in Jerusalem into his love and protection - ‘under his wing'. It is they who refuse, not God who changes his mind when the city is destroyed! It looks as if God is a failure when God's children turn away, like parents feel when their children in some way get lost in their way through the world. But God never gives up on us - God will return and be praised.
    • Jesus' heart goes out to the people of his beloved city, Jerusalem. His heart goes out today in every city, for he lives among us everywhere. We pray that our hearts become like his and we look on the needs of people and hear the cries of people like he does.