December 21, 2020
St. Peter Canisius
Open-hearted
…the Lord,
who is our help and our shield…
Psalm 33:20

After a certain amount of living, we know some of our most vulnerable spots: places that are still hurting and old scars that can unexpectedly zing with pain.

Several years ago, I had an extended bout of “walking pneumonia.” I coughed so hard that I broke a rib! Long after my lungs had cleared, the rib was still “speaking”to me. It took over two years before it was fully healed and stopped aching.

When I am about to encounter people and situations that I know may be difficult emotionally, or may probe a tender spot in my psyche, I cross my arms over my chest and pray first to be open-hearted. Secondly, I pray, “Lord, protect my heart.”

The word courage comes from the Latin cor, which means “heart.” When we ask God to be our shield, we will be given the courage we need for whatever is ours to do.

Oh, Lord, with you as my help and my shield, I need not be afraid.

- Jennifer Christ

Song of Songs 2:8-14 or Zephaniah 3:14-18a • Psalm 33:2-3, 11-12, 20-21 • Luke 1:39-45

Comments

December 21, 2020 at 07:08 PM

Jennifer, thank you for your inspiring devotion. * I agree with Jennifer: " After a certain amount of living, we know some of our most vulnerable spots: places that are still hurting and old scars that can unexpectedly zing with pain." Sometimes after all we've been through we tend to become discouraged and dislike ourselves. We try hiding from Jesus, whether it’s a sinful, worldly lifestyle, or a veil of fear and anxiety. We may try hiding from Jesus, but that doesn’t stop Him from looking for us, He’s trying to look at us, (Lk 19:10). He loves us so much that He came down from heaven to earth to look at us. We might look in a mirror and dislike what we see, but Jesus loves to look at us. He says to each of us: “Ah, you are beautiful, My beloved” (Sg 1:15). I like these words from Jennifer also: "The word courage comes from the Latin cor, which means “heart.” When we ask God to be our shield, we will be given the courage we need for whatever is ours to do." We need not be afraid. God Bless our Living Faith and continued prayers for all.

December 21, 2020 at 05:49 PM

God's Courage, Strength and Sound Mind are with me as I confronted a situation that was troubling me these past few months. Thank you God. I will pray the Rosary and Chaplet too.

December 21, 2020 at 03:19 PM

Very inspired devotion today, Jennifer. The heart is the most fragile. As the Wizard said to the Tinman; "Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable". My nightly rosary will be with Rose and her Grandma, and with Ken and his son. Prayers to all the Living Faith family and their loved ones. Just a few more days... Maranatha, Come Lord Jesus!

December 21, 2020 at 12:14 PM

Amen.

December 21, 2020 at 11:25 AM

Update on Jessi: she arrived at Gallup, NM, yesterday afternoon :-) They will be briefed this morning and assigned to the local hospital because the local hospital staff has been hit hard by COVID-19 :-( I believe the Word of the Lord to Abram as it is to Jessi and her TeamRubicon in Genesis 15:1, "Do not be afraid, Abram. (Jessi and TeamRubicon) I AM your shield, your very great reward!" So I pray in agreement with the Holy Spirit, Amen :-)

December 21, 2020 at 10:49 AM

Amen! This is wonderful. Prayers for LF family's requests. God bless!

December 21, 2020 at 10:43 AM

A very comforting devotion, Jennifer. May the Lord shield our hearts/hurts so we may do His will. Ken and Rose, you are in my prayers today. A blessed and peaceful day as we prepare for His coming.

December 21, 2020 at 10:18 AM

"Courage is not the absence of fear but it is acting inspite of it!" Mark Twain *And for a Christian, the only way to do that is with Jesus as my help and my shield!!! God is telling me how and why I can do just that in today's Scripture: ***"Arise, my beloved, my dove, my beautiful one, and come!" (SOS 2:10b, 13b) ***"The LORD has removed the judgment against you, He has turned away your enemies; The LORD is in your midst, you have no further misfortune to fear...He will rejoice over you with gladness, and renew you in His love," (Zephaniah 3:15, 17b) *** "Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled." (Luke 1:45) What I remember You said, Lord! *1) Ezekiel 11:19, 36:26, "And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh!" *2) Jeremiah 31:33, Hebrews 8:10, "I will put My law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people!" *3) 2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!" Amen :-) "But the plan of the LORD stands forever; the design of His heart, through all generations. Blessed the nation whose God is the LORD, the people He has chosen for His own inheritance!" :-):-):-) I believe and I accept, Amen!

December 21, 2020 at 09:11 AM

Amen. Prayers for the LF Family especially for Ken and Rose. An early Merry Christmas to all as my family is awaiting the birth of our first grandchild any day. So fitting the good Lord has graced us with our own special “birth” that I’ve been praying all will go well. I will be with all those gathering for the LF zoom gathering in spirit and prayer. God bless!

December 21, 2020 at 08:50 AM

Mary hurried to the hill country to visit her cousin Elizabeth, to share the good news with her. That journey alone was a long journey, not an easy walk, but a journey. Mary was determine to share her news with Elizabeth. Are we as excited to share the news that Jesus is coming and we can be a part of his life as well. Sharing the light of salvation with others who are in darkness. This is our life’s journey with the time we have left on this earth. To do the will of God. Let us leap for Joy this week as we finish our preparation for his coming. Put God First in your life, today not tomorrow. Put the past behind and look forward to a new beginning. All is possible for God. Dear Jesus, please hear our prayers for all of the Living Faith Family, for all of people who do not have anyone to pray for them, lastly for all of the souls in Purgatory. Amen

Joann
December 21, 2020 at 08:58 AM

Prayers offered for yout grandmother Rose and your son Ken

December 21, 2020 at 08:50 AM

"When I am about to encounter people and situations that I know may be difficult emotionally, or may probe a tender spot in my psyche, I cross my arms over my chest and pray first to be open-hearted. Secondly, I pray, “Lord, protect my heart.”" A truly beautiful paragraph Jennifer it's had a positive effect on me. We need to care and have empathy for ourselves as much as we do for others. With Gods grace we can do it.

December 21, 2020 at 08:00 AM

Amen! Thank you Holy Father for this beautiful day and for this Gospel today. Thank you Lord for my faith, my life and for my family. Thank you Holy Father, most of all, for your great sacrifice and for the opportunity of forgiveness and reconciliation. Please Lord have mercy. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ, King of Endless Glory. Amen

December 21, 2020 at 04:54 AM

Dear Rose, I will be praying for your Grandma today. And may the Lord guide the doctors hands that he may rid her of cancer and she will recover well. Have faith...and trust in his goodness. May God be with you and your family.

December 21, 2020 at 03:55 AM

Lord protect my heart, 4 very powerful words that are so encouraging. Pray with earnest please that the doctors hands are guided by Good to remove all cancer this morning and that grandma come out feeling as good as she can. Lord give her the strength to endure. May you say to her, not today but one day, well done my God and faithful servant. Protect my grandfather's heart and calm his fears. Be not today that you call my Grandma home.

Tillie
December 21, 2020 at 07:21 PM

Rose, prayers for your grandmother, I pray that her surgery will be successful and that all her cancer will be removed. I pray that God will give her more time to spend with your grandfather and you. God Bless you!

Tim
December 21, 2020 at 08:41 AM

Dear Jesus, please hear our special prayers today for Rose’s grandmother, that she remain under your watchful eye. If possible your will for her be done, by removing the cancer that has enter into her body. She is a loyal servant of our Lord Jesus Christ and there is much more she has to do for your kingdom on this earth. We pray today that you heal her. Amen

Kjc
December 21, 2020 at 08:34 AM

Rose I will pray for your grandmother and grandfather at Mass this morning. Living faith family please pray for my oldest son who has medical procedures tomorrow. Ken

Sandy
December 21, 2020 at 07:27 AM

Dear Rose , how fitting is today’s devotion for you! My prayers and heartfelt understanding go out to you and your family today. Have courage and faith. You are not alone as these prayers from all will bolster your strength!

Elise
December 21, 2020 at 06:46 AM

Prayers for your family today! May you all feel the embrace of Gods love through out this difficult time.

Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.

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