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Don’t just read Bible, live it

By Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD

A small boy asked a friend: “Why’s your 80-year old grandma always sits at the corner for hours reading the Bible?”

The friend paused momentarily and replied: “Because she’s cramming for her Final Exam!”

The Bible should not be read only when we are already elderly or are in the “pre-departure area” but rather throughout our earthly life.

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A man once bragged that he read the Bible from cover to cover several times. Somebody remarked, “People who read the Bible from cover to cover, know only the cover.”

Just reading the Bible is not enough.

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Today is NATIONAL BIBLE SUNDAY, the culmination of the National Bible Month. The event reminds us of the all-important Word of God as our ultimate guide in life. How do we read or listen to God’s Word?

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First, we read God’s Word and try to understand it. Second, we take God’s Word to heart. We discern how it applies to our own life situation. And third, we ask God to help us apply it in our day-to-day life.

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This is what Pope Francis did. In one of his talks during his pastoral visit to our country in January 2015, he cited instances in the Scriptures about how Jesus had always showed deep compassion. When he met the poor widow whose son died and was to be buried, Jesus was so “moved with pity” thinking that he was the only child helping the pitiful mother, he raised the son to life.

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The Holy Father also mentioned about the multitude of famished people following him. Again deeply “moved with pity,” he provided food for them by miraculously multiplying the two fish and loaves of bread.

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These and other biblical passages on the compassion of Jesus inspired Pope Francis to emulate the Lord’s virtue of mercy and compassion, highlighting this as his motto and the hallmark of his papacy.

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He does not only profess this but also translate it into action. One of his many charity projects was helping the poor back in Buenos Aires as a cardinal and he continues to do it even now in Rome as pope.

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TRANSFORMING EFFECT. Today there are renewal and charismatic communities who are doing Bible studies regularly.

People around them notice a remarkable transformation for the better. Whereas before they led selfish and vice-ridden lives, now they are caring, generous and family-oriented.

Let us read, take to heart the Word of God, and, above all, live it.

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THE LIGHTER SIDE. A man and his wife were arguing about who should brew the coffee each morning. The wife said, “You should do it, because you get up first.” The husband said, “No. You’re in charge of the cooking, so you should do it.

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The wife replied, “Even the Bible says the man should do the coffee.” The astonished husband retorted, “I can’t believe that, show me.” She fetched the Bible, opened it and showed at the top of several pages…”HEBREWS”.

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INDIGENT SICK. In the spirit of Jesus’ acts of mercy and compassion, how about sharing your material blessings to alleviate the sufferings of the poor and less fortunate, especially those we are supporting?

For inquiries, e-mail me at: belsvd@gmail.com.

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