Monday, March 13, 2017

Psalm for Sunday, March 19, 2017


Psalm 95: 1-2, 6-7, 8-9  (Read)

“We are the people God shepherds,
the flock He guides.”

The Psalm is a call to praise the Lord
and to obey Him. We are cautioned not
to 'harden our hearts' as the Israelites
did at Meribah. We are not to test the 
Lord as our spiritual ancestors tested 
the Lord 'as in the day of Massah in 
the desert.'  After all, we are 'God’s 
well tended flock.'

Our Lord is a good shepherd, and we 
are His sheep. As St Paul tells us in 
today's second reading,  the love of 
God is 'poured out into our hearts
through the holy Spirit.' (Romans 5:5)
Knowing that, we should 'bow down 
in worship, kneel before the Lord
who made us,'  as the Psalm says.
And when we humble ourselves
and open our hearts to the Lord, 
we are set free. We are no longer
constrained by the things of this world, 
and we can be open to His love and
His teachings.

Today's Gospel  affirms that Our Lord Jesus
is our savior, and just as the life of the Samaritan
woman at the well was transformed by the words
of Jesus, we too can be transformed, if we truly
listen to the Lord. Not only will He tell us
'everything we ever did,' but He will give us
that living water which quenches our spiritual
thirst. (See John 4: 5-42)

At that point our hearts will no longer be hardened.
We will 'bow down in worship,' and as our psalmist
says, we will greet our Lord with a song of praise.


Discussion Questions for Reflection

1.  Our psalmist encourages us not to harden our hearts if we
hear God's voice.   
Do you find it difficult sometimes to carry out God's will in your life even if you believe 
He is speaking to you?   Give an example.

2.  The psalm reminds us that we are like sheep and the Lord is our
Are you willing to be just an ordinary sheep  among His flock?  If so, what does 
it mean to you to be shepherded by the Lord?


  1. At this moment I felt like God is testing my faith as in the day of Massah in the desert. I thought once I am part of God's well tended flock, and my faith in Him will never waver. But these days I felt as if my heart is hardened.

    Why? I stopped going to daily Mass for prayer. I missed Ash Wednesday, and one Sunday Mass, and some Church functions due to being sick with the flu. Instead of praying and worshiping, I stayed at home and was constantly watching TV. I made a lot of excuses for my wrong decisions. I was convinced God could not deliver me from my sickness. I rely on the Doctor's prescribed medicines, not believing in God's healing power. I was confused by Satan's whispering. I hardened my heart by resisting God's way.

    I have learned that my resisting God does not happen all at once; it is the result of a series of wrong choices. I sensed that I have become numb to my guilt.

    But finally I have come to my senses. I called upon the Holy Spirit to fill me with the love of God. No more love of the things of this world. I have spent a lot of money to buy clothes and jewelry. I did not do anything for anyone who is in need. I became useless and worthless because of my hardened heart.

    I am beginning to be frightened that God may toss me aside because of my ungrateful heart. On the other hand, I want to prove I am one of the people God shepherds. In order to do this, I should kneel in worship and praise before God again. First of all I intend to go to Confession with a contrite heart and to open my heart to the Lord because I am one of his special flocks that He guides.

  2. "THE GOOD SHEPHERD” is not just any old shepherd, but is in fact, God. So, He is the perfect confidant, friend, care giver, father, grandfather, guide, teacher,… the one in a trillion. We, who are part of His flock, are truly blessed to know Him … what a STRENGTH He is when we turn to Him. We must be grateful, and let Him know how grateful we are. We are the fortunate ones.