Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Psalm for Sunday, January 1, 2012


Psalm 67:  2-3, 5, 6, 8

“May God bless us
and may he let his face shine upon us.”
So much that God does for us
is contained in this verse from the Psalm.
God gives us his grace through his son Jesus,
who is our Savior.
God gives us material blessings –
all our treasure and gifts are from him.
Moreover, he gives us spiritual blessings as well ;
these are called by St. Paul the fruits of the spirit.

We all want God’s blessings, as the Psalm says.
Since the time of Moses,
God’s chosen people have reached out for God’s blessing.
The petition in the Psalm
is rooted in the early books of scripture;
today’s 1st reading  (Nm 6 : 22-27) says,
“The Lord let his face shine upon you
and be gracious to you.”

St. Paul (2nd reading) confirms that God
sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts,
so we could cry out “Abba, Father.”
The psalm predicts that God’s saving power shall be known
among all the nations (including ourselves).
God conveys that same message
to the Mother of our Lord in this week’s Gospel.
The shepherds from distant lands hear the news
that our Savior is born;
they return glorifying and praising God.
The Psalm also guides people like us to shout for joy,
“May the peoples praise you, God;
may all the peoples praise you!”

The Psalm calls for
the way of the Lord to become
known upon earth among all the nations.
Indeed the Psalm  predicts that
God’s saving power shall be known
among all the peoples.
Thankfully, that includes us.


 Discussion Questions for Reflection

1.  The Psalm petitions God to 'let his face shine upon us.'
What does it mean to you, especially during this
Octave of the Nativity, that God would let his face shine upon you?

2.  Our psalmist calls for God's salvation to be known
among all the nations.   How would you relate this verse
to the birth of our Savior?

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