S. Barnabas| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection
Barnabas, a Jew of Cyprus, comes as close as anyone outside the Twelve to being a full-fledged apostle. He was closely associated with St. Paul (he introduced Paul to Peter and the other apostles) and served as a kind of mediator between the former persecutor and the still suspicious Jewish Christians.
When a Christian community developed at Antioch, Barnabas was sent as the official representative of the Church of Jerusalem to incorporate them into the fold. He and Paul instructed in Antioch for a year, after which they took relief contributions to Jerusalem.
Later, Paul and Barnabas, now clearly seen as charismatic leaders, were sent by Antioch officials to preach to the Gentiles. Enormous success crowned their efforts. After a miracle at Lystra, the people wanted to offer sacrifice to them as gods—Barnabas being Zeus, and Paul, Hermes—but the two said, “We are of the same nature as you, human beings. We proclaim to you good news that you should turn from these idols to the living God” (see Acts 14:8-18).
But all was not peaceful. They were expelled from one town, they had to go to Jerusalem to clear up the ever-recurring controversy about circumcision and even the best of friends can have differences. When Paul wanted to revisit the places they had evangelized, Barnabas wanted to take along John Mark, his cousin, author of the Gospel (April 25), but Paul insisted that, since Mark had deserted them once, he was not fit to take along now. The disagreement that followed was so sharp that Barnabas and Paul separated, Barnabas taking Mark to Cyprus, Paul taking Silas to Syria. Later, they were reconciled—Paul, Barnabas and Mark.
When Paul stood up to Peter for not eating with Gentiles for fear of his Jewish friends, we learn that “even Barnabas was carried away by their hypocrisy” (see Galatians 2:1-13).
Barnabas is mentioned by name as one of the generous members of the idyllic and extremely poor Church in Jerusalem: "The community of believers was of one heart and mind, and no one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they had everything in common. . . . There was no needy person among them, for those who owned property or houses would sell them, bring the proceeds of the sale, and put them at the feet of the apostles, and they were distributed to each according to need.
"Thus Joseph, also named by the apostles Barnabas (which is translated 'son of encouragement.), a Levite, a Cypriot by birth, sold a pieace of property that he owned, then broguht the moeny and put it at the feet of the apostles" (Acts 4:32, 34-37).
Barnabas is spoken of simply as one who dedicated his life to the Lord. He was a man "filled with the Holy Spirit and faith. Thereby large numbers were added to the Lord." Even when he and Paul were expelled from Antioch in Pisidia (modern-day Turkey), they were "filled with joy and the Holy Spirit."
Mother Mary, little did you know what God had in store for you. Yet your confidence and faith in God never failed. May your example of simple day-to-day faith help us to unfold the presence of your Son, Jesus, in all we do.
Quote by S. Padre Pio:
If you notice a feeling of impatience arising, immediately have recourse to prayer.
Divine Mercy Reflection
Reflections on Notebook Two: 112-188
We now enter into Notebook Two of the six notebooks that make up the Diary of Saint Faustina. The reason for having more than one notebook is simply that when one notebook was filled by Saint Faustina she began with a new one. Therefore, there is nothing particularly different from one notebook to the other. However, for the purpose of this current book of daily reflections, each reflection will begin to be lengthened, starting here with Notebook Two, so as to help you, the reader, enter more deeply into the beautiful mysteries of faith and our shared spiritual life that have been revealed in these writings of Saint Faustina.
You are invited once again to take one reflection each day and to ponder it throughout the day. Try to pray the prayer for each reflection each morning, noon and evening. Allow each mystery reflected upon to become a source of wisdom and understanding for you.
Reflection 162: Light Dispels the Darkness
Light dispels the darkness. Scientifically speaking, we know that light and dark are not opposing forces; rather, dark is the absence of light. And when light enters in, the darkness is no more. So it is with the Mercy of God. Without Mercy, our souls are dark. We fall into doubt, confusion, fear and despair when Mercy is absent. In this case, we are left in utter darkness where the filth of sin can reign. But God desires to bring the light of His Mercy. When this happens, and when we open our souls to this gift, the darkness of doubt, confusion, fear and despair vanish. They cannot remain where the Light of Mercy resides (See Diary #831).
When you look at your soul, what do you see? Is there darkness? Do you see its foul effects? Do you see doubt, confusion, fear or despair? Do you see sin? If so, the Lord desires to dispel the darkness that breeds these burdens and bring forth His merciful Light. Reflect upon the part of your soul that appears to be in most need of His Mercy. Know that He wants to enter that area of your life and waits on you for the permission to do so. He will wait for you to let Him in.
Lord, please come into the darkness of my soul. Bring forth the bright rays of Your Light and dispel all that is not of You. Come refresh me and renew me, Lord. Help me to see and to know Your great love. I desire to live in the Light of Your Mercy, dear Lord. Jesus, I trust in You.