April 22

from Psalm 62
Only in God be at rest, my soul, for from God comes my hope. The Lord is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold. I shall not be disturbed. With God is my safety and my glory. He is the rock of my strength; my refuge is in God. Trust in the Lord at all times; in him be at rest.

Two decades ago, during a time of uncertainty after the terror attacks on September 11, 2001, Fr. Walter Bunofsky, SVD was working at Divine Word College. A nearby radio station asked him to offer short reflections to provide a much-needed sense of peace to listeners. With less than 60 seconds to deliver his message, Fr. Walter started the WORD for Today feature on KDTH in Dubuque. It was originally slated to run until the end of that year, but listeners loved it so much that even after Fr. Walter moved to Techny, Illinois, the station continued to play his recorded reflections. Fr. Walter died on Dec. 29, 2018, but his reassuring words live on each day as KDTH continues to broadcast his messages.

Those same words of wisdom appear here each day. Visit this page often where you will find reflections that can bring you comfort all year long.

January 1. The WORD for today is Peace... On this first day of the New Year we turn our thoughts to peace, for today is also “World Day of Peace.” Echoes of “peace on earth, good will to all” still can be heard in our homes and work places. May each of us desire and work for peace in our part of the world, especially in our own hearts.

January 2. The WORD for today is Time... In the Book of Ecclesiastes we hear: “There is an appointed time for everything and a time for every affair under the heavens. A time to be born and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to harvest; a time to tear down and a time to build; a time to weep and a time to laugh. There is a time for war and a time for peace. There is a time for everything.”

January 3. The WORD for today is Peace Prayer... It is called the Prayer of St. Francis. “O Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me bring love. Where there is injury, your pardon, Lord. And where there is doubt, true faith in you. O Master, grant that I may never seek so much to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love with all my soul.”

January 4. The WORD for today is Bible... To nourish your soul, read the Bible. These sacred writings bear a God who is not just an impersonal Deity, but a compassionate, forgiving, guiding Love, who is interested in each and every one of us, as a unique and irreplaceable individual, whose existence transcends time and space.

January 5. The WORD for today is Hope... What sort of person plows the field in the autumn but has no hope for the spring? Who plants in the spring and would have no hope for a rich harvest? We accomplish nothing without hope. Hope is strength, a power which nothing can hold down, and when it is shared inevitably spreads to others.

January 6. The WORD for today is Gifts... In some countries of the world, today, January 6th rather than December 25th, is the day for gift-giving, to keep in mind the spirit of the Three Wise Men who came to offer their gifts to the newly born King. Today is also a day to be grateful for the gift of faith through the preaching of the Gospel to all peoples.

January 7. The WORD for today is Psalm 65... You crown the year with your goodness. Abundance flows in your lands, in the pastures it flows. The hills are surrounded with joy, the meadows covered with flocks, the valleys shout for joy as they await the warmth of spring and summer. You crown the year with goodness, O Lord, our God.

January 8. The WORD for today is Peace... In some of the memorable words that she left with us, Mother Teresa wrote: “One begins with prayer that comes from inner silence. The fruit of prayer is faith that in turn leads to love. Love overflows into service and service brings peace. It is a peace that is a gift from the Lord, our Prince of Peace.”

January 9. The WORD for today is Psalm 65... You, O Lord, care for the earth, giving it water, filling it with riches. Your river in heaven brims over to provide grain. And so you provide for the earth; you bless its growth, even now as is rests and awaits a new season of planting and growing. You crown the year with your goodness.

January 10. The WORD for today is Sacredness of Life... Among his many words of wisdom and wonder Rabbi Abraham Heschel writes: “The universe is not like a homeless orphan child and life is not like a valueless object abandoned. We are neither lords of the universe nor even masters of our own destinies. We are a possession of God. It is this divine ownership that makes life a sacred thing.”

January 11. The WORD for today is Psalm 98... Sing a new song to the Lord for he has worked wonders. The Lord has made known his salvation, has shown justice to all nations. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. Sing to the Lord with the sound of music. Acclaim him King and Lord. The Lord comes to rule the earth.

January 12. The WORD for today is Psalm 29... The Lord will bless his people with peace. Give to the Lord glory and praise, the glory due his name. The voice of the Lord is over the waters. The voice of the Lord is mighty and majestic. The God of Glory thunders and in his temple all say, “Glory!” The Lord is enthroned as King forever. The Lord will bless his people with peace.

January 13. The WORD for today is Sacred Moment and Place... As a skier was coming down a slope, he suddenly pulled up and stopped. He simply looked around at the wonder, the quiet beauty of it all; the clear blue sky above, the soft white snow below, the green cedars and evergreens all around. In silence he wondered, “God is in this place.” For that skier it was a sacred moment in a sacred place.

January 14. The WORD for today is Value... Perhaps we heard this from our parents or one of our teachers: “If you are going to do something, do it right.” For in that lies its true value. Everything should be done in the spirit of loving care with which our Creator fashioned the universe, our world, and each one of us. For God saw that everything was good, very good.

January 15. The WORD for today is Trust... Every human relationship is founded on trust. Without trust a person does not feel safe. Without a feeling of safety you cannot be vulnerable. If you cannot be vulnerable there is no intimacy. Without intimacy we cannot grow and mature. It all begins with the willingness to trust.

January 16. The WORD for today is Patience... In an age of high-speed technology we can find ourselves becoming increasingly impatient. We want quick results. To wait patiently for a particular outcome becomes unbearable at times. And yet, to wait patiently is nature’s way. Patience slows us down, keeping us more closely attuned to the natural seasons of growth and development.

January 17. The WORD for today is Strength to Love... In one of his books, The Strength to Love, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. has the following dedication: “To my Mother and Father, whose deep commitment to the Christian faith and whole-hearted devotion to its timeless principles have given me an inspiring example of the strength of love.”

January 18. The WORD for today is Personal Dignity... Our rights and privileges as well as our duties and responsibilities are deeply rooted in the unique sacredness and dignity of who we are as persons. How awesome, then, is the moment of our preparation as human beings - the beginning moment - the moment of conception, and how sacred is each moment along the way from birth to natural death

January 19. The WORD for today is Love... The Four Gospels of Christianity are called “Good News” because they center on one very important aspect of divine revelation, namely, that God is Love. Love, therefore, created us. Love sustains us at any given moment. Love will welcome us back when our earthly journey comes to an end.

January 20. The WORD for today is Listening... There is a beautiful and touching story in the Old Testament when Samuel as a young boy responds to the call of the Lord with these words: “Speak, Lord, your servant is listening.” There are such moments of grace in our lives at any given moment when we too can respond to God’s invitations; “Speak, Lord, your servant is listening.”

January 21. The WORD for today is Psalm 27... The Lord is my light, my help, and my salvation. Why should I fear? With God I fear no one. God protects me all my life. There is one thing I ask of the Lord that I long for: all of my days with God to be dwelling, gazing with awe at the beauty of God and in wonder look on God’s house.

January 22. The WORD for today is Sacred Place... Our creator has given us a vast and grand universe - a sacred place made of Earth, Wind, Fire, and Water. These basic elements that surround us remind us of our own natures made up of material and spiritual elements. Though we are rooted in Earth and Water, our spirits soar aloft on Wind and Fire.

January 23. The WORD for today is Revelation 15... Mighty and wonderful are your works, Lord mighty God! Righteous and true are your ways, O King of the nations! Who would dare refuse you honor or glory due your name, O Lord? Since you alone are holy, all nations shall come and worship in your presence. Your mighty deeds are clearly seen.

January 24. The WORD for today is Psalm 121... I lift up my eyes to the mountains. From where shall come my help? My help shall come from the Lord who made heaven and earth. He will never allow me to stumble. The Lord is my guard and my shade. He will guard me from evil. He will guard my going and coming both now and forever.

January 25. The WORD for today is Self-Love... Self-love is discovering the greatness within yourself, knowing you are a beloved child of God, knowing that God’s Spirit resides within you. It is knowing that God is at work in you, through you, and around you, thus making you an open channel for the healing energy of love to be expressed first in yourself and then to others.

January 26. The WORD for today is Psalm 19... The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The decree of the Lord is trustworthy, giving wisdom to the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart. The command of the Lord is clear, enlightening the eye. The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The ways of the Lord are true. All of them as just.

January 27. The WORD for today is Psalm 127... ”Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build. Unless the Lord guards the city, in vain does the guard keep vigil. It is vain for you to rise early and put off your rest at night, to eat bread earned by hard toil. All this God gives to his beloved in sleep.” Psalm 127 reminds us that, though our efforts are needed, God is in charge of our lives.

January 28. The WORD for today is Music... The renowned cellist, Pablo Casals, says that music gives peace to the restless and comfort to the sorrowful. Music directs those who no longer know where to turn to find new ways, and those who have despaired to gain new confidence and love. Music is a gift in all its variety and styles.

January 29. The WORD for today is Mission... From an unknown poet these words: “I don’t know how to say it, but somehow it seems to me that maybe we are stationed where God wants us to be. That little place we are filling is the reason for our birth, and just to do the work we do is why he sent us down on earth. It is our mission in life.”

January 30. The WORD for today is Psalm 92... How good to thank you, Lord, to praise your Name, Most High, to sing your love at dawn, your faithfulness at dusk with sound of lyre and harp. For your work brings delight, your deeds invite song. I marvel at what you do. How deep are your thoughts, O Lord! You, O Lord, stand firm forever.

January 31. The WORD for today is All is Beautiful... The writer-poet Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “Never lose an opportunity for seeing that which is beautiful; for beauty if God’s handwriting. Welcome it in every fair face, sky, and flower. And thank God, for beauty is a cup of blessing. Everything is beautiful in its own way.”

February 1. The WORD for today is Light... With each passing day the light of the sun arches higher and higher across the sky, remaining with us longer and longer as each day goes by. Although we are in the middle of the winter months, still the sunlight can give us a feeling of warmth. Today let us be more aware of this great gift of light from our Creator and give God thanks and praise.

February 2. The WORD for today is Psalm 27... The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom do I fear? The Lord is my life’s refuge; of whom am I afraid? When evildoers come at me to devour me, these, my enemies and foes, themselves stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart does not fear, for the Lord is my light and my salvation.

February 3. The WORD for today is Answered Prayers... I asked God for strength that I might achieve; I was made weak that I might learn humbly to obey. I asked for help that I might do greater things; I was given infirmity that I might do better things. I asked for all things that I might enjoy life; I was given life that I might enjoy all things. I was given nothing that I asked for, but everything that I hoped for. Despite myself, my prayers were answered.

February 4. The WORD for today is Psalm 33... The Word of the Lord is faithful and all the works of God are to be trusted. The Lord loves justice and right and fills the earth with his love. By his Word the heavens were made, by the breath of his mouth all the stars. The Lord spoke and the world came to be. The Lord commanded and the world sprang into being.

February 5. The WORD for today is Psalm 8... Lord our God, the whole world tells the greatness of your name. Your glory reaches beyond the stars. Even the voice of infants declares your strength, your power to stop the enemy and the avenger. I see your handiwork in the heavens; the moon and stars you set in place. Who are we that you remember and care for us? The whole world tells the greatness of your name, Lord our God.

February 6. The WORD for today is Psalm 1... The words of Psalm 1 echo through the ages…”Happy are they who do not follow the counsel of the wicked, nor go the way of sinners. Rather, the law of the Lord is their joy; God’s law they study day and night. They are like a tree planted near streams of water that yields its fruit in season; its leaves never wither. Whatever they do prospers.”

February 7. The WORD for today is Trust in God... From the Gospel of John we hear: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Have faith in God; have faith in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am, you also may be.” (John 14)

February 8. The WORD for today is God's Glory... ”The world is charged with the glory of God.” So begins a poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins echoing Psalm 19. “The sky tells the glory of God, tells the genius of God’s work. Day carries the news of day; night brings the message to night without a word, a sound, a voice being heard; yet their message fills the world, reaching to the ends of the earth.”

February 9. The WORD for today is Psalm 147... The words of Psalm 147 echo the goodness of God. “Praise to the Lord, for he is good. He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds. He tells the number of the stars, calling each one of them by name. Great is our God, mighty in power; to God’s wisdom there is no limit. Sing praise to our God for God is gracious and good.”

February 10. The WORD for today is Gifts of God... What words can describe the gifts of God? They are too numerous to count! Among them, our very being - made in God’s image, endowed with knowledge and intelligence, and filled with love. To us is given the sense of joy to delight in the beauty of creation; to us is given the privilege and the responsibility to nourish and cherish all God’s gifts to us.

February 11. The WORD for today is Our Heart's Longing... Psalm 42 expresses well the longings of the human heart. “As a deer longs for running streams of water, so my soul longs for you, O God. I thirst for you, the living God. When will I see your face? I remember the days when I entered the house of God. There I was caught up in the joyful sound of pilgrims giving God thanks and praise.”

February 12. The WORD for today is Bridge Building... Bridge builders make life easier in both a material and spiritual way. Historians build bridges to the past, philosophers to other cultural thought-patterns, theologians to the source of life and creation. Engineers span rivers from one bank to the other. Bridges make it possible for people to meet one another, providing connections so vital for life.

February 13. The WORD for today is Human Heart... The human heart is not built in a day. It takes a lifetime to build a human heart. It takes all: birth and learning to talk, making wishes, living with hope, dreaming dreams. The human heart is nourished with yearning; it prays and strives to find a faithful friend; it does not love until it dies in fidelity for the mystery of another life.

February 14. The WORD for today is Heart of Love... We find the word “heart” a thousand times in the Bible. The heart is the source of feeling, desires, and thoughts. There are many categories for the meaning of “heart”. Many metaphors describe it, especially as a symbol of love. Can any be greater than that of God’s eternal love for each and every one of us made known in the heart of God’s Son?

February 15. The WORD for today is Letter to the Romans... It was this text from the Letter to the Romans that led to the conversion of St. Augustine: “It is now the hour for you to wake from sleep. The night is far spent; the day draws near. Let us cast off the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us live honorably as in daylight.”

February 16. The WORD for today is Psalm 36... How precious is your love, O God! We take refuge in the shadow of your wings. We feast on rich food of your house; from your delightful streams you give us drink. For with you is the fountain of life and in your light we see light. Continue your kindness toward us, your just defense of the honest heart.

February 17. The WORD for today is Book of Judith... A new hymn I will sing to my God. O Lord, great are you and glorious, wonderful in power and unsurpassable. Let your every creature serve you; for you spoke and they were made; you sent forth your spirit and they were created. No one can resist your Word.

February 18. The WORD for today is The Folly of Worry... Among his endearing words echoing through the ages, recorded in the Gospel of Matthew (6:25-26), Jesus reminds us: “Do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air! They do not sow or reap; they gather nothing into barns. Yet your heavenly Father feeds them.”

February 19. The WORD for today is Life is Like a Weaving... My life is but a weaving between my Lord and me. Often times he weaves pain and sorrow and I in foolish pride forget that he sees the upper and I the underside. Not until the loom is silent and the shuttles cease to fly shall God unroll his handiwork and explain the reason why. The dark threads are as needful in the Weaver’s skillful hand as the threads of gold and silver in the pattern he has planned.

February 20. The WORD for today is Resting in the Lord... In the Gospel of Matthew we find these consoling words of Jesus: “Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon yourself and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

February 21. The WORD for today is Tapestry of Life... The tapestry of life is made of many strands of thread. Each day we are given but one strand for weaving the story of our life. We will not see the whole picture until the final end. We live out our life in segments - one piece of thread at a time - each thread made of personal choices, choices for better or worse, life or death, one day at a time.

February 22. The WORD for today is Lesson From a Common Match... The simple yet powerful ordinary match with which we start our fires is created for the purpose of giving its light, its warmth, its very self in the act of service before it burns out. The story of the match is also our story - the giving of ourselves in loving service for others, warming hearts and lighting the way

February 23. The WORD for today is Blessings of God... This day God gives me strength of high heaven, sun and moon shining, flame in my hearth. This day God sends me strength as my steersman, might to uphold me, wisdom as guide. God’s eyes are watchful, his ears are listening, his lips are speaking, friend at my side. God’s way is my way, God’s shield is around me, God’s hosts defend me, saving from evil.

February 24. The WORD for today is Book of Tobit... Do to no one what you yourself dislike. Give to the hungry some of your bread and to the poorly clad some of your clothing. Seek counsel from the wise. At all times bless the Lord God and ask him to make all your paths straight and to grant success to all your endeavors and plans.

February 25. The WORD for today is Honesty... In the Book of Proverbs we hear: “The one who speaks the truth gives honest witness, but a false witness utters deceit. There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts but the tongue of the wise brings healing. Truthful lips endure forever but a lying tongue is but a moment. Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil but those who plan good have joy.”

February 26. The WORD for today is Word of God... The Letter to the Hebrews (4:12-13) describes the Word of God as “living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating even between soul and spirit, joints and marrow, and able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart.” Each day is a time to learn more about the Word of God as recorded in the Holy Scriptures and handed on and lived out in communities of faith.

February 27. The WORD for today is Trust in God... In the Gospel of Matthew we hear: “Can any of you, by worrying, add a simple moment to your life span? Why are you anxious about clothes to wear, food to eat? Your heavenly Father knows that you need these things. Seek first the kingdom of God and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will take care of itself.

February 28. The WORD for today is Psalm 40... In the first verse of this psalm we hear: “I waited patiently for the Lord’s help; then God listened to me and heard my cry.” During difficult times we need to reclaim the witness of Holy Scripture and the promises of God-that darkness gives way to light, despair to hope, sadness to joy, and, ultimately, death gives way to life.

March 1. The WORD for today is Lessons of the Heart... Most of what we learn comes from the heart. The mind gives us directions, but the heart gives us meaning - the purpose behind our directions. Very often this purpose rests on the foundation of our faith and the love of our God, who fills our hearts with inner longing for the meaning of our lives.

March 2. The WORD for today is Gratitude... Each day - to be grateful for the warmth of the sun, the soft light of the moon, and the mystery of the stars; for the silence of winter, the promise of spring, the beauty and bounty of summer, the splendor of autumn. To be grateful for life itself and the love deep within us shared with family and friends and the passing stranger who may knock on the door of our hearts.

March 3. The WORD for today is Living Each Day... Yesterday’s troubles are written in sand, brushed out of existence by God’s own hand. The things of the future our hearts may fear, can all be resolved when tomorrow is here. Out of a lifetime these hours alone, the hours of today, are completely our own. So as each sun is setting, there is reason to say: “Thank you Lord, for your gift - the gift of today.”

March 4. The WORD for today is Memories... The tide recedes but leaves behind bright seashells on the sand. The sun goes down, but gentle warmth still lingers on the land. The music stops and yet is echoed on in sweet refrains; for every joy that passes, something beautiful remains. And it is good to remember along life’s highways, that tomorrow’s pleasant memories are our joy-filled todays.

March 5. The WORD for today is Psalm 92... How good to thank you, Lord, to praise your name, Most High. To sing your love at dawn, your faithfulness at dusk, with the sound of music. For your work brings delight, your deeds invite song. I marvel at what you do. Lord, how deep are your thoughts! You, O Lord, stand forever.

March 6. The WORD for today is Hands... Hands surround our world: open and closed hands, strong and weak ones, healthy hands and crippled ones. Each day our hands can be used for good: to help the helpless, heal the injured, serve the needy, support the weak, console the sorrowing, create something new and beautiful, renovate something old and valuable, bestow a blessing, or to be folded in prayer.

March 7. The WORD for today is Psalm 91... All you who are sheltered by the Most High, who live in God’s shadow, say to the Lord: “My refuge, my fortress, my God in whom I trust.” God will cover you like a nesting bird, with wings sheltering you. No nighttime terror shall you fear nor shall daytime fears frighten you. Trust in the Lord always.

March 8. The WORD for today is Value of a Smile... One of the most magnetic happenings we all experience is the power of a genuine smile. It somehow symbolizes happiness, contentment, and joy. In a world that can be filled with anxiety. Tension, stress, fear, and worry, a smile can be an invitation to share an experience of trust and happiness.

March 9. The WORD for today is Time... Time is a very precious, personal possession. To give our time and to do so generously involves a good amount of self-sacrifice. And yet, what better way to use our time than to share it? There is no better way to keep it than to give it away; for the moment of selfless giving lasts forever.

March 10. The WORD for today is Cherished Moment... During an interview Albert Camus, philosopher and author, was asked what in his work as a writer was the moment he most cherished and preferred: the beginning of a possible article or book? The first draft? The final copy, the completion of his work? His answer: “The moment of conception.”

March 11. The WORD for today is Psalm 139... You search me, Lord, and you know me. Wherever I sit or stand, you read my inmost thoughts; whenever I walk or rest, you know where I have been. Where can I hide from you? How can I escape your presence? I scale the heavens, you are there! I plunge to the depths, you are there! I fly toward the dawn or settle across the sea, even there you take hold of me.

March 12. The WORD for today is Psalm 139... O God, you created every part of me, knitting me together in my mother’s womb. For such handiwork, I praise you. Awesome is this great wonder! I see it clearly. You watched every bone taking shape in secret, forming in the hidden depths. You saw my body grow according to your design. For all this, O Lord, I give you thanks and praise.

March 13. The WORD for today is Dance of Wisdom... Sit quietly and let the Spirit of God possess you, leading you as in a dance, where one must lead, so that the two partners become as one. You must keep in step with the melody - the prompting and guidance of the Spirit - leading you step by step, day by day, moment by moment, to the Dance of Wisdom.

March 14. The WORD for today is Daybreak... Daybreak indicates that night is over. And yet, it does not proclaim the full light of day. It holds both of them; one mixed with the other. Are not all of us like daybreak? While some of our activities already belong to the light, we are not totally free from the remnants of darkness. We are creatures of Daybreak.

March 15. The WORD for today is Psalm 119... In an act of deep trust in the Lord, the psalmist prays: “My heart begs you, Lord, hear me so I can keep faith. I beg you, make me free, so I can live your laws. I face you in the cold night praying, waiting for your word. I keep watch through the night. Hear me, loving God. Let your justice, your holiness make me live. Your law is my whole truth.

March 16. The WORD for today is Happiness... Happiness is only for those who do not expect it at every moment, who receive it as a gift, who know how to live without it at times. Happiness can be like an illusive butterfly. Stop chasing after it and it may land on your shoulder or just stay long enough on a leaf or branch to fill you with a sense of awe at its beauty.

March 17. The WORD for today is Leaf... A leaf, born in a tender bud, full of hope and potential, springs into fullness and greenness during the warm bright summer. As fall approaches, it begins to dry up only to share with us its beauty and wonder in a dazzling display of colors and fills us with renewed hope of its return to spring green. Life springs eternal.

March 18. The WORD for today is Piety... The pious, religious person is one who has every reason to despair but chooses not to because for such a person there is simply too much light to hide in darkness, too much love to harbor hatred, too much beauty and goodness to see only the broken pieces of shattered dreams, and far too much life to end it in despair or to choose death in any of its forms.

March 19. The WORD for today is Work... On this feast of St. Joseph, a word about work. Though modern machinery and technology can transform the toilsome character of work, nonetheless work can become a boring, repetitious, monotonous daily chore. One’s religion can give work its meaning and direction, transforming it into a labor of love, joining all of creation in giving glory and honor to our Creator.

March 20. The WORD for today is Psalm 143... In this part of Psalm 143 it is interesting to note how our whole being comes into play: Memory, intellect, imagination, will, and desire - in giving praise to God. “I remember the days that are past, I ponder all your works, I muse on what your hand has made, and to you, O God, I stretch out my hands. Like a parched land my soul thirsts for you.”

March 21. The WORD for today is Hope... Hope is the answer when problems and difficulties emerge in our lives, for to have hope is to move from “Why did this happen?” to “What can I do now?” To move forward in faith and not remain stuck in the hopelessness is to look farther down the road and know that God is working for a greater good. To have hope is to experience a place of peace, a reservoir of power, a source of strength, courage, and spiritual wisdom.

March 22. The WORD for today is Psalm 146... My whole life gives praise to God. They are wise who depend on God, creator of heaven and earth. The Lord keeps faith forever, giving food to the hungry, justice to the poor, freedom to captives. The Lord opens the eyes of the blind. Happy are they who depend on the Lord, their God.

March 23. The WORD for today is Psalm 117... Of all the 150 Psalms, Psalm 117 is the shortest. Yet its few lines tell us well the purpose of our lives in relationship to the God who loves us. “Praise! Give glory to God! Nations, peoples, give glory! Strong is the love embracing us. The Lord is faithful forever. Praise the Lord forever!” Our life is meant to be a life of thankful praise to God.

March 24. The WORD for today is Solidarity... A quote from the renowned Rabbi Abraham Heschel: “The anguish of our time calls for solidarity among God’s people. A solid basis of such solidarity is the sense of being challenged by a demand to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly before our God. To do so is an answer to a deep conviction of the dreadful incompatibility of hatred with the glory that is everywhere.”

March 25. The WORD for today is Psalm 96... The Lord is great and worthy of praise…It was the Lord who made the heavens, so let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad: let the sea and all within it thunder praise; let the land and all it bears rejoice. Let all the trees of the forest and woods shout for joy and the presence of the Lord.

March 26. The WORD for today is Faithful Friend... In the sixth chapter of Sirach we hear these words on friendship: “A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; one who finds such a friend finds a treasure. A faithful friend is beyond price; no sum can balance a friend’s worth. A friend is a life-giving remedy, such as he who fears God finds. For he who fears God behaves accordingly and his friend will be like himself.”

March 27. The WORD for today is Psalm 63... This Psalm speaks of God’s steadfast love. “O God, you are my God. I seek you. My soul thirsts for you as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live.” May God’s steadfast love comfort and strengthen us today.

March 28. The WORD for today is Psalm 62... I wait patiently for God to save me; I depend on God above. He alone protects and saves me; God is my defender and I shall never be defeated. Trust in God at all times, my people. Tell him all your troubles, for God is our refuge. You yourself, O Lord, reward everyone according to their deeds.

March 29. The WORD for today is Light of Faith... In the dark of night with a flashlight in his hand a young boy started off toward the barn on an errand. His father encouraged him to walk only as far as an object made visible by the flashlight’s beam of light. Reaching that point, he flashed the light on another object. And so, step by step, object by object, the boy reached the barn. Perhaps our light of faith serves the same purpose especially in the dark moments of our life’s journey of faith.

March 30. The WORD for today is Serenity Prayer... O God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference, living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time, accepting hardship as a pathway to peace, trusting that you, O God, will make all things right, if I surrender to your will.

March 31. The WORD for today is God's Love for Us... From the third chapter of John’s Gospel we read these words: Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”

April 1. The WORD for today is Birds of the Air... Responding to their laws of nature, birds fly freely, unencumbered by unnecessary baggage. Though we are on a different level, the birds can teach us to trust, to let go of our unnecessary baggage and burdens, material or emotional, to be free, to conform to nature’s laws, and to give God glory, thanks, and praise.

April 2. The WORD for today is Psalm 19... Thank you, Lord, for my life so wonderfully made. It is amazing to think about. Your workmanship is marvelous. How well I know it. You were there while I was being formed in utter seclusion. You knew me before I was born. How precious it is, Lord, to realize that you are thinking about me always.

April 3. The WORD for today is Desires... In a writing entitled Desiderata (things desired) we hear: “Go placidly amid the noise and haste and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly, and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they, too, have their story.”

April 4. The WORD for today is Desiderata... If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater or lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

April 5. The WORD for today is Desirerata... You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars. You have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore, be at peace with God…and whatever your labors or aspirations, keep peace with your soul. Be careful! Strive to be happy!

April 6. The WORD for today is Treasure of Love... From the moments of time’s first drawn breath, love already resides in us, a treasure locked in the heart’s hidden vault. It is a treasure meant to be discovered through awareness and then shared. Only in sharing does the treasure of love increase in value. Otherwise, it dies.

April 7. The WORD for today is Kaleidoscope... The word “kaleidoscope” comes from three Greek words: beautiful, shape, and to see. As spring unfolds, nature does manifest itself in a variety of beautiful forms and shapes to see. With the help of the lens of faith our eyes can behold a true kaleidoscope of grandeur, beauty, truth, and goodness.

April 8. The WORD for today is Prayer... An early Christian wrote: “All of creation and every creature prays. Cattle and wild beasts pray and bend the knee. They look up to heaven and call out, lifting up their spirit in their own way. Birds too rise and lift themselves up to heaven, opening out their wings in the form of a cross and give voice to what seems like a prayer.”

April 9. The WORD for today is Letter t the Ephesians 4... “Put away from you all bitterness and anger, arguing and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another as God in Christ has forgiven you.” In the light of these words, we realize that forgiveness frees us from letting circumstances rule our lives.

April 10. The WORD for today is Loving Faith... In the First Letter of John we hear: “The love of God consists in this; that we keep God’s commandments - and these commandments are not a burden. Everyone begotten of God conquers the world and the power that has conquered the world is this faith of ours.”

April 11. The WORD for today is Psalm 147... How good to sing God’s praise! How lovely the sound! God heals the brokenhearted, binding their wounds. Great is our God and powerful, wise beyond all telling. Sing thanks to the Lord! For the Lord spreads clouds over the sky, sending rain to the earth, clothing the hills with grass.

April 12. The WORD for today is Love of God... In John’s first letter he writes: “God is love and they who abide in love abide in God. No one has ever seen God. If we love one another, God abides in us and God’s love is perfected in us.” As we reflect on these words, we ask our God of Love to lead and guide us throughout the day and night along the path of love for one another.

April 13. The WORD for today is God's Love For Us... Calling each of us by name, God says: “I formed you and gave you the breath of life. I did this so that my arms could embrace you and my heart could love you. I want you to know that my relationship with you is of more value than the things you do for me. All that I have is yours and all has been freely given.”

April 14. The WORD for today is Prayer in Time of Doubt... May the strength of God pilot me; the wisdom of God instruct me. May the hand of God protect me and the word of God direct me. May your salvation, O Lord, be always mine this day; for in the faith-filled words of St. Thomas the Apostle, you are truly, “My Lord and my God.”

April 15. The WORD for today is Light in Darkness... Father James Keller, founder of the Christophers, said: “Each one of us has, by the grace of God, the power to change the world for the better. Every act of care for others has a ripple effect, touching many lives. So, where there is hate, bring love; where there is darkness, carry light. In other words, be a Christ-bearer - a Christopher.”

April 16. The WORD for today is Psalm 16... I bless God who teaches me, who schools my heart even at night. I am sure God is here right beside me. I cannot be shaken. So my heart rejoices, my body thrills with life, my whole being rests secure. You will never abandon me. You show me the road to life; boundless joy at your side forever.”

April 17. The WORD for today is Sense of Awe and Wonder... “What is it all for?” a little girl asked her mother as they entered a beautiful botanical garden. As her mother tried to explain it all, the little girl, fascinated by a large water font gushing streams of water high into the sky, ran over to it. She stood before it and just looked, lost in awe and wonder. Sometimes words and explanations just won’t do.

April 18. The WORD for today is Wonder of Our Eyes... If we are able to see the wonders of God’s creation in all its glory, how marvelous are the eyes that behold it all! They are like a camera taking a million pictures and storing them away in the memory of instant recall. Eyes, too, are windows for the soul, mirroring a whole display of moods and emotions, good or bad, love or anger, meanness or gentle care.

April 19. The WORD for today is Psalm 145... The eyes of all creatures look to you, O Lord, and you give them food in due time. You are just in all your ways and loving in all your deeds, close to all who call on you from their hearts. You grant them their desires, who hold you in reverence and awe; you hear their cry and you save them.

April 20. The WORD for today is Psalm 28... Blessed be the Lord, for he has heard the sound of my call; the Lord is my strength and my shield. In him my heart trusts and I find help; then my heart exults and with my song I give thanks. The Lord is the strength of his people and the saving refuge of his anointed.

April 21. The WORD for today is Psalm 31... In you, O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your justice rescue me, incline your ear to me, make haste to deliver to me! Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to give me safety. You are my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake you will lead me and guide me.

April 22. The WORD for today is Psalm 62... Only in God be at rest, my soul, for from God comes my hope. The Lord is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold. I shall not be disturbed. With God is my safety and my glory. He is the rock of my strength; my refuge is in God. Trust in the Lord at all times; in him be at rest.

April 23. The WORD for today is Psalm 95... Come, let us sing joyfully to the Lord: let us greet him with thanksgiving; let us joyfully sing psalms to him. For the Lord is a great God…in his hands are the depths of the earth and the tops of the mountains are his. His is the sea, for he has made it, and the dry land, which his hands have formed.

April 24. The WORD for today is Word of God... In chapter twenty-four of Luke’s Gospel, Jesus, now risen, walks along with two disciples on the way to Emmaus. He enters into their lively exchange concerning his death and stories of his resurrection. Later on they would remark: “Were not our hearts burning inside us as he talked to us and explained the Scriptures to us?” He still walks with us today in his living Word -shared and proclaimed.

April 25. The WORD for today is Blessings in Disguise... An ancient principle reminds us to look for salvation in the darkest moments of our lives. We emerge into the light not by denying our pain, but by walking through it. The common turn of phrase we apply to this wonderful action of grace is: “that was a blessing in disguise.”

April 26. The WORD for today is God's Ways For Us... The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The decree of the Lord is trustworthy, giving wisdom to the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart. The command of the Lord is clear, enlightening the eye. The statues of the Lord are true, all of them just. The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever.

April 27. The WORD for today is Created for a Purpose... We are not here by chance but by God’s choosing. God’s hand formed us, making us the persons we are. Somehow God’s providential love and care and our free response to that love and care makes each one of us unique, compared to no one else. And by God’s design we are here for a definite purpose, fulfilling the end for which we were created.

April 28. The WORD for today is Words of Jesus... Among his many words spoken, remembered, and retold are these words of Jesus. “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life. I am the Good Shepherd. I lay down my life for my sheep.”

April 29. The WORD for today is Psalm 65... In Psalm 65 we acknowledge in faith God’s care for the earth, entrusted to our care. “You, O Lord, visit the earth and water it, making it abundantly fertile. You drench plowed furrows and level their ridges. With showers you keep the ground soft, blessing its young sprouts. You adorn the year with your bounty. The hills, pastures, and valleys sing for joy.”

April 30. The WORD for today is Light of Light... A fourth century song describes God sending his Son in these words: “O splendor of the Father’s light that makes our daylight lucid, bright. O light of light and sun of day, now shine on us your brightest ray. True Son, break out on earth and shine, in radiance with your light divine.”

May 1. The WORD for today is Work and Energy... A word on work and energy as we remember St. Joseph the Worker on this first day of May. Work by definition is energy spent. Energy is the capacity to do work and provides power to move muscles, heat and light our homes, offices, and workplaces. Ever grateful for the energy stored in our resources, let it work for us and not against us, giving glory to God, the source of all work and energy.

May 2. The WORD for today is Mary, Mother of Jesus... For Christians, especially Catholics, Mary is honored in a special way during the month of May. In his poem May Magnificat Gerard Manley Hopkins asks, “Why May?” and answers, “Ask of her, the mighty Mother. Her reply puts this other question: What is spring? - Growth in everything…All things rising…Mary sees, sympathizing with that world of good, nature’s motherhood.”

May 3. The WORD for today is Words of a Gardner... When I go into my garden before anyone is awake, I go there for the time being into perfect happiness. In this hour fresh and still, the face of every flower salutes me with silent joy that fills me with infinite content. It is a sacred place, a holy space where God speaks to me. Truly blest are they who have such a place.

May 4. The WORD for today is Psalm 19... The heavens declare the glory of God; the sky proclaims its builder’s craft; one day to the next conveys that message; one night to the next imparts that knowledge. There is no word or sound; no voice is heard; yet their report goes forth through all the earth, their message to the ends of the world.

May 5. The WORD for today is Book of Judith... A new hymn I will sing to my God. O Lord, great are you and glorious, wonderful in power and unsure-passable. Let your every creature serve you; for you spoke and they were made; you sent froth your spirit and they were created; no one can resist your word. For those in awe and reverence of you, you are merciful.

May 6. The WORD for today is Everyday-The Lord's Day... Today is a day the Lord has made, and each hour will be blessed, if you just ask the Lord for strength to do your best. Whatever path you follow, God will be walking by your side to be your source of comfort, your friend, and your constant guide. Remember this each morning and you will not be afraid to face with growing confidence each day the Lord has made.

May 7. The WORD for today is Networking Goodness... Our world is held together by many unselfish, gratuitous acts. For without the monk’s silent prayer, a mother’s family care, the dedication of a person responsible for a special task, or the poet’s flights of wonder - without all these things - our cities would unravel. We are all like strands of thread, lines of communication in a network of goodness.

May 8. The WORD for today is Gratitude... In the Letter to the Colossians, chapter three, we are encouraged to “be thankful. Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another, singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” May our every day echo the gratitude we sing in our hymns of thanks and praise.

May 9. The WORD for today is Letter to the Corinthians... Love is patient, love is kind; it is not jealous; it does not seek its own interests; it is not quick tempered. Love is never rude; it is not self-seeking; it is not prone to anger. There is no limit to love’s forbearance, to it trust, its hope, its power to endure. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes and endures all things. Love never fails.

May 10. The WORD for today is The Struggle for Peace... The earth is too small a star and we too brief a visitor upon it for anything to matter more than the struggle for peace. Somehow “peace” and “struggle” seem to be opposed to each other, but only if we perceive peace as some tranquil oasis outside ourselves, a place of utter blissful unconcern. This is not the peace that Jesus offers us, for his peace comes at a price-the price of his own life.

May 11. The WORD for today is Bundle of Sticks... From the words of John Newton: “I compare the troubles of a year to a bundle of sticks, far too heavy for us to lift. But God mercifully unties the bundle and gives us first one stick, which we carry today, and then another, which we are to carry tomorrow, and so on. This we might easily manage, but we choose to increase our troubles by carrying yesterday’s stick again today and adding tomorrow’s burden to our load before we are required to bear it.”

May 12. The WORD for today is Psalm 27... “There is one thing I ask of the Lord, for this I long, to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life; to marvel there at God’s goodness, to ask for guidance. For there God keeps me safe.” Though that “house” can be a church, a temple, a synagogue, is it not also that place within us?

May 13. The WORD for today is God's Loving Care... The words from a beautiful spiritual say it well: “I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, for God’s eye is on the sparrow and I know he watches me. So, why should I feel discouraged? Why should the shadows come?...When Jesus is my portion, my constant friend is he. His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me.”

May 14. The WORD for today is Psalm 1... Happy the one who follows not the counsel of the wicked but who delights in the law of the Lord day and night. Such a one is like a tree planted beside flowing waters, yielding fruit in due season, whose leaves never fade. All that he does shall prosper.

May 15. The WORD for today is Psalm 85... Let us see, O Lord, your mercy and give us your saving help. Your help is near to those who fear you and your glory will dwell in our land. Mercy and faithfulness have met, justice and peace have embraced. Faithfulness shall spring from the earth and justice look down from heaven.

May 16. The WORD for today is Peace... In the fourteenth chapter of John’s Gospel, Jesus shared this message shortly before he died. “Peace is my farewell to you, my peace is my gift to you; I do not give it to you as the world gives peace.” His peace was and is today the gift of salvation. We only need to accept it in daily faith and thanks.

May 17. The WORD for today is Glory of Springtime... The glory of springtime symbolized in so many ways especially in nature comes at a price. The seed is buried and dies, giving birth to a tiny sprout, pulled by the sun, pushing up against and through the ground, finally unfolding in the brilliance of a flower, a plant, or a tree. Such are our lives - like a seed.

May 18. The WORD for today is Value of Life... Among Mother Teresa’s many words spoken and lived are these: “The fullness of joy is to behold God in everything. When a life comes into my hands, all my hope, love, and energy go to support that life, to help that life grow to its fullness, because that person has been created in the image of God. We have no right to destroy that life.”

May 19. The WORD for today is Love, the Bond of Perfection... In chapter three of the Letter to the Colossians we hear: “If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above…for you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God…Put on, then, as God’s chosen ones, heartfelt compassion, kindness, and patience; bear with one another…Forgive as God has forgiven you. And over all these put on love, the bond of perfection.”

May 20. The WORD for today is Psalm 67... O God, be gracious and bless us and let your face shed its light upon us. So will your ways be known upon earth and all nations learn your saving help. The earth has yielded its fruit, for God, our God, has blessed us. May God continue to bless us until the ends of the earth revere him.

May 21. The WORD for today is Dwelling on Higher Things... In Paul’s Letter to the Philippians we read: “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just and pure, pleasing and commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things…and God of peace will be with you.”

May 22. The WORD for today is Christian Hymn... O God of light, the dawning day give us new promise of your love. Each fresh beginning is your gift, like gentle dew from heaven above. Make us the servants, the instruments of your peace, renew our strength, remove all fear, and be with us, Lord, throughout this day, for all is joy if you are near.

May 23. The WORD for today is A Simple Hazelnut... Julian of Norwich, a mystic of the thirteenth century, holding a simple hazelnut in the palm of her hand saw in it all that is made. She said: “It is made by love. See in this little thing three sublime truths: God made it. God loves it. God keeps it. In these three truths stay and grow.”

May 24. The WORD for today is Psalm 104... Praise the Lord, my soul! O Lord, how great you are! You are clothed with majesty and glory. You make streams flow in the valleys and rivers run between the hills. From the sky you send rain on the hills and the earth is filled with your blessings. You make grass grow for the cattle and plants for our use.

May 25. The WORD for today is Not to Fear... Do not fear what may happen tomorrow. The same loving God who cares for you today will care for you tomorrow and every day. Either he will shield you from suffering, or he will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace then and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginings. Fear not, says the Lord, I am with you always.

May 26. The WORD for today is Common Call... Whatever our call, our vocation in life, as Christians we have this common call expressed in 1 Peter 3: “All of you should be like-minded, sympathetic, loving toward one another, kindly disposed, and humble. Do not return evil for evil, insult for insult; rather, return a blessing. This is your calling.”

May 27. The WORD for today is Psalm 121... Raising his eyes toward the rugged terrain and the mountains he must cross, the psalmist cries out: “From where shall come my help?” With faith and trust he prays: “My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.” Assured of this, he continues: “God will not allow your foot to slip; your guardian does not sleep. The Lord is your guardian.”

May 28. The WORD for today is Light of Day... An old Rabbi asked his pupils how they could tell when night had ended and day had begun. After a number of possible but incorrect answers, a student impatiently asked, “Then, what is it?” The Rabbi replied, “When you can look on the face of any man or woman and see that it is your brother or sister. Otherwise, it is still night.”

May 29. The WORD for today is Letter to the Philippians... Rejoice in the Lord always! Everyone should see how unselfish you are. Dismiss all anxiety from your minds. Present your needs to God in every form of prayer full of gratitude. Then God’s own peace, which is beyond all understanding, will stand guard over your heart and minds.

May 30. The WORD for today is Live Joyfully... The greatest honor that we can give to almighty God is to live gladly, to live joyfully, because of the knowledge of his love for us. May each day make us more aware of God’s love that leads to a joyful life and may this life of joy lead us to make others equally aware of God’s love for them.

May 31. The WORD for today is Simple Gesture of Love... In his Gospel, Luke remembers Mary visiting her cousin Elizabeth. “And Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth.” Such a simple gesture and yet so full of loving concern on Mary’s part for Elizabeth. Mary stayed with her for three months as both prepared for the birth of John the Baptizer.

June 1. The WORD for today is Everlasting Love... The month of June ushers in a season of weddings - promises of mutual love, loyalty, honor, and understanding. It can be a time to reflect on God’s love for us so often described in the Bible as the mutual love of bride and bridegroom. “I have loved you,” says the Lord, “with an everlasting love.”

June 2. The WORD for today is Generosity... In Psalm 112 we hear: “Happy is the person who is generous.” Generosity brings joy for several reasons. There is the pleasure of seeing the delight a generous action produces in another person. Also, the satisfaction of knowing that a generous action softens some of life’s harsher realities and, above all, that it is pleasing to God.

June 3. The WORD for today is Covenent... One word that echoes throughout the Bible is the word “covenant”- that special agreement, contract, or testament made between God and us, the People of God. “You are my people, I am your God.” The uniqueness of this covenant is God’s loyalty to us, even when we are unfaithful to God. It is God’s unconditional and everlasting love that urges us to love one another in a covenant relationship.

June 4. The WORD for today is Blessed Asurance... We know God loves us the way we are. We also know that God wants us to keep growing and learning. We are a miracle of God’s creation and this alone is reason enough to do our best from moment to moment and to be thankful. We need only to place our hand in God’s ever-opened and outstretched hand and walk with blessed assurance.

June 5. The WORD for today is Psalm 86... ”Teach me, Lord, your way that I may walk in your truth, single-hearted and revering your name. I will praise you with all my heart and glorify your name forever. You, O Lord, are a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger, most loving and true.” Lead and guide me in all your ways.

June 6. The WORD for today is Blessing For Today... May the God of the misty dawn waken you, the rising sun stir you up, and the God of the morning sky send you on your way. May the God of noonday stillness renew your strength and bring you home. May the God of sunset delight your eye, the God of twilight bring you calm, and may the God of dusk and night bring you peace.

June 7. The WORD for today is Inner Peace... Let nothing disturb you; let nothing frighten you. Everything is changing. God alone is changeless. One who has God lacks nothing; God alone fills all our needs. Inner peace and patience attain the goal of all our desires – to rest securely in the peace of God.

June 8. The WORD for today is God's Care for Us... Consider the birds of the air. They do not sow and they do not reap. Yet, God provides for them. Consider how the lilies grow. They do not spin or weave, yet not even Solomon in all his splendor was arrayed like one of these. So, seek first the kingdom of God and the wealth of God’s holiness, for wherever your treasure lies, there you will find your heart.

June 9. The WORD for today is Meaning of Life... The late Dag Hammerskjold said that at one particular moment in his life he said “Yes” to Someone for his existence. From that moment he was certain that his life was meaningful in self-surrender to a goal. From then on he knew what it meant “not to look back” nor worry about tomorrow.

June 10. The WORD for today is Future... It is true. We should not worry about tomorrow. But there is one aspect of the future that is vital. Someone expressed it this way: “You must give birth to your images. They are the future waiting to be born. Fear not the strangeness you feel. The future must enter into you long before it happens.”

June 11. The WORD for today is Encouragement... In chapter four of the Acts of the Apostles we read that a man named Joseph of Cyprus sold a piece of property and gave the money to the Apostles. This act of encouraging support earned him the name of “Barnabas” – meaning “son of encouragement.” To give supporting encouragement is a virtue worth developing in our daily lives.

June 12. The WORD for today is Hope in God... In a time of sorrow and anguish, Jeremiah the prophet wrote these words: “This is what I shall tell my heart and so recover hope: the favors of God are not all past, his kindnesses are not exhausted; every morning they are renewed; great is his faithfulness. So, I will hope in God my allotted portion.”

June 13. The WORD for today is Gift of Faith... In his letter to Timothy, Paul writes: “I am reminded of your sincere faith which was first in your grandmother, Lois, and your mother, Eunice. That is why I am reminding you now to fan into a flame the gift God gave you when I laid hands on you; a gift of power, love, and self-control, and not timidity.”

June 14. The WORD for today is God's Love... God so loved the world that he sent us his Son, who, in turn, reflected his Father’s love in so many ways. The spirit of this love in the heart of Jesus abides with us and is wonderfully symbolized in friendship, especially in marriage; for as Christ loves the Church so must we love one another.

June 15. The WORD for today is Psalm 90... As our future unfolds in the light of our hopes and promises made to each other, Psalm 90 reminds us that we are not alone. “Teach us, O Lord, to count our days aright to gain wisdom of heart. Fill us at daybreak with your love. May your favor rest on us. Give success to the work of our hands.”

June 16. The WORD for today is Peacemakers... ”We Christians,” wrote an early Christian writer, “do not bear arms against any country; we do not make war anymore. We have become children of peace.” And in our day, Pope John Paul II reminds us: “War should belong to the tragic past; it should find no place on our agenda for the future.”

June 17. The WORD for today is Prayer... O Lord, help me to enter into the mind of everyone who talks with me, and keep me alive to the feelings of each one present. Give me a quick eye for kindnesses that I may be ready in doing them and gracious in receiving them. Give me a quick perception of the feelings and needs of others, and make me eager-hearted in helping them.

June 18. The WORD for today is Good Conscience... Just as the education of nerve and sinew is vital for an excellent athlete and education of mind is vital for the brilliant scholar, so is education of one’s conscience vital for a highly effective moral standard of behavior. It needs a regular diet of inspiring literature, noble thoughts, and living in harmony with its quiet inner voice.

June 19. The WORD for today is Little Things... Someone wrote: “When I consider what tremendous consequences come from little things, I am tempted to think that there are no little things.” This is even more true when those little things are done out of love for one another, especially if done for the love of God. The late Mother Teresa built her life around such “little things.”

June 20. The WORD for today is Psalm 146... Happy are those whose hope is in the Lord their God, maker of heaven and earth, the seas and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever, secures justice for the oppressed, gives food to the hungry, protects the helpless, and supports the defenseless. Happy are those who trust in the Lord.

June 21. The WORD for today is Summer Garden... The words of a spiritual seem appropriate: “I come to the garden while the dew is still on the roses and the voice I hear, falling on my ear, the Son of God discloses; and he walks with me, and he talks with me; he tells me I am his own. And the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.

June 22. The WORD for today is The Bible... The Bible is holiness in words. Other books you can estimate, measure, compare; the Bible you can only extol. The Bible is not just our vision of God but God’s vision of us. All of human history as seen by the Bible is the history of God’s search for us. To read it is to read one’s own story.

June 23. The WORD for today is Our True Worth... Our true value is not in dollars and cents but in the fact that God cares for us. In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus reminds us that God knows when just a single sparrow falls to the ground; that every hair of our heads has been counted; and so we are not to be afraid of anything. We are worth more than a flock of sparrows.

June 24. The WORD for today is Power of Music... Holy Scripture is filled with references to music. People in biblical times understood that music nourishes the soul and brings the human spirit closer to God. Psalm 96 reminds us to “sing to the Lord.” Using music in a variety of ways can help us in our daily spiritual growth.

June 25. The WORD for today is Clock of Life... The clock of life is wound but once and no one has the power to tell just where the hands will stop, at late or early hour. The present only is our own to seek to do God’s will, tomorrow holds no promise, for the clock may then be still. The clock of life teaches the value of every precious moment.

June 26. The WORD for today is Only to Love... In the Letter to the Romans we hear: “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another. For one who loves another has fulfilled the law…The commandments are summed up in this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no evil to one’s neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfillment of the law.”

June 27. The WORD for today is Psalm 33... Rejoice, you just, in the Lord; praise from the upright is fitting. Sing to the Lord a new song for the Lord is true; all his works are trustworthy. The Lord loves justice and fills the earth with goodness. By the Lord’s word the heavens and earth were made; let all creation show reverence to God.

June 28. The WORD for today is Glory of God... An early Christian writer by the name of Irenaeus wrote that “the glory of God is each human person fully alive; and the fullness of being alive is a vision of God, that is, a hunger to see the face of God.” Until we do, our hearts remain restless because our true purpose in life is to rest in God. Nothing else will ever satisfy our yearnings or calm our restlessness.

June 29. The WORD for today is Nearness of God... We arise each day through God’s strength to pilot us. God’s might upholds us, and God’s wisdom guides us. God’s hand guards and protects us from every deadly trap in our path, from every temptation to wander off the path, from everyone who shall wish us ill, near or far. God is always near.

June 30. The WORD for today is Psalm 34... As we come to the end of another month, may the words of the psalmist be ours: “I will bless the Lord at all times; praise shall be always in my mouth. My soul will glory in the Lord that the poor may hear and be glad. Magnify the Lord with me. Let us exalt the Lord’s name together and give God thanks and praise now and forever.”

July 1. The WORD for today is Duty of Delight... Dorothy Day, who founded the Catholic Worker, has said: “To act lovingly is to begin to feel loving, and certainly to act joyfully brings joy to others, which in turn makes one feel joyful. I believe that we are called to the duty of delight.”

July 2. The WORD for today is God's Love Revealed... The people of God have opened the Bible to find out not only that God loves them but, in fact, God IS love (1 John 3:8). God revealed this love in so many ways, especially through his Son, the Word Incarnate – the revealed Word. On our part we need only to listen with attentive minds and hearts.

July 3. The WORD for today is Faith... Thomas, one of the Twelve chosen by the Lord to be an Apostle, had his moments of confusion and doubt, as all of us can and do. Doubts can serve as a test; they can often strengthen our faith. Though Thomas doubted, he came to believe and gave us a brief but deeply significant profession of faith in his memorable words: “My Lord and my God.”

July 4. The WORD for today is Interdependence... Today we celebrate our independence as a nation. As a nation we have also learned to be interdependent – that ability to understand the other point of view and to work together among ourselves as a people as well as with other nations to achieve what we conceive as “liberty and justice for all.”

July 5. The WORD for today is God's Creative Sustaining Word... God’s word is powerful in what it is and what it does. It is creative. God said: “Let there be light” and there was light. It is sustaining. God maintains that which is created: “Do not fear, for I who created you have also redeemed you. I have called you by name. You are mine.” (Is. 43)

July 6. The WORD for today is Love Without Fear... The love that casts out fear knows our name, as we read in Isaiah 43. Our name is deeper than both the fear and the conditioned mind that generates and sustains that fear. Only the heart that knows how to relate to divine love can handle the mind with all its fears and anxieties

July 7. The WORD for today is Rest in the Lord... May we always take comfort in the words we find in the eleventh chapter of Matthew’s Gospel: “Come to me all of you who are heavily burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon yourself and learn from me for I am gentle and humble of heart. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

July 8. The WORD for today is God's Word is Effective... In the Book of Isaiah 55:10-11 we read: “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there until they have watered the earth, so shall my word be; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish its purpose and succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”

July 9. The WORD for today is God's Enduring Word... In Isaiah 40 we hear: “Though grass withers and flowers fade, God’s word stands forever.” Perhaps the disposability of much of our manufactured goods points out to us and teaches us that only God’s word is lasting as is God’s love. This and this alone we can hold on to – the enduring Word of God.

July 10. The WORD for today is God's Creative Word... From Psalm 33: “The word of the Lord is faithful and all his works to be trusted. The Lord loves justice and right and fills the earth with his love. By his word the heavens were made; by the breath of his mouth all the stars. He spoke and the world came to be; he commanded and it sprang into being.”

July 11. The WORD for today is Trust in theLord's Promise... From an early Christian writer and renowned preacher, St. John Chrysostom: “I have God’s promise; I am surely going to rely on my own strength. His Word is my staff, my security, my peaceful harbor.” Perhaps John kept in mind the promise of Jesus: “I am with you always, until the end of the world.”

July 12. The WORD for today is Light Shining out of Darkness... God moves in a mysterious way, his wonders to perform; he plants his footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm. His purposes will ripen fast, unfolding every hour; the bud may have a bitter taste, but sweet will be the flower. Blind belief is sure to err, and scan his work in vain; God is his own interpreter and he will make it plain.

July 13. The WORD for today is Praise for Day and Night... The silver notes of morning will greet the rising sun, as once the Easter glory shone around the Risen One. So will the night of dying give peace to heaven’s day, and hope of heaven’s vision will light our pilgrim way. So let us walk each morning and through the day of light, to meet the evening sunset and the brilliant stars of night.

July 14. The WORD for today is Psalm 65... You have visited the land and watered it; greatly have you enriched it, softening it with showers, blessing its yield. You have crowned the year with your bounty and rejoicing clothes the hills. The herds and flocks in the fields and the grain in the valleys shout and sing for joy.

July 15. The WORD for today is Psalm 4... Know that the Lord does wonders for his faithful one; the Lord will hear me when I call upon him. O Lord, let the light of your countenance shine upon us! You put gladness into my heart, more than when grain and wine abound. As soon as I lie down, I fall peacefully asleep, for you alone, O Lord, bring security to my dwelling.

July 16. The WORD for today is Dealing with Fear... Do not fear what may happen tomorrow. The same loving God who cares for you today will care for you tomorrow. Either he will shield you from suffering or he will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginings.

July 17. The WORD for today is Siimple Approach... Theology has its place as it delves deeper into the mysteries of faith. Much is learned, but for many of us the more simple approach is to listen as Jesus tells us: “Look at the birds, the flowers, the sun and rain, children at play. Taste the goodness of water, bread, and wine. Know that God made all these things and that he loves you.”

July 18. The WORD for today is Psalm 5... Listen to my words, O Lord; attend to my sighing. To you, O Lord, I pray. At dawn you hear my voice. Let all who take refuge in you be glad and exult forever. Protect them that you may be the joy of those who love your name. For you, O Lord, bless the just one. You surround us with your good will.

July 19. The WORD for today is Giving Thanks... From the words of a song: “How can I say thanks, O Lord, for all that you’ve done for me; things so undeserving that you came to give your life for me? And the voices of a million angels could not express my gratitude, for all that I am and ever hope to be, I owe it all to thee. To you be the glory."

July 20. The WORD for today is Treasure in Earthen Vessels... The Apostle Paul was aware of his great privilege not only to preach the Good News but also to suffer for the cause of that News. Aware also of his human frailty he said: “We hold this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing power may be of God and not from us.” He trusted in that power.

July 21. The WORD for today is Weeds Among the Wheat... In the parable of the weeds among the wheat Jesus seems to be giving the bad gardening advice of letting the weeds grow up with the wheat. But behind the parable Jesus tries to teach us not to be too hasty in our judgements of who is right or who is wrong. “Leave the judging to me,” he is telling us.

July 22. The WORD for today is God's Love for Sinners... One basic element of the Good News of our salvation is God’s unconditional love for each of us. He comes as the Good Shepherd for lost sheep. Why they are lost, he does not ask. Mary of Magdala was such a one. When others would stone her, Jesus did not. “I do not condemn you. Go and sin no more.” She would be able to do so because she discovered she was truly loved.

July 23. The WORD for today is Blessed by Angels... The belief in angels can be experienced and expressed in a number of ways. As someone put it: “In my life I have been blessed by angels. Some are strangers whose smile or compassionate eyes have made a difficult day a little easier. Others are soul mates who connect with the deepest part of my spirit.”

July 24. The WORD for today is Blessing... May the God of heaven’s vault bless you, of shimmering moonlight caress you, of sparkling stars lead you on. May the God of melody and song cheer you, of strange shadows calm your nerves, and of straight roads bring you home. May God be watching with you from a familiar window and hand in hand may you wait for the dawn.

July 25. The WORD for today is Church Steeple... Perhaps not so much amid the high-rise buildings of a large city, but more so out in an open prairie, the rising of a church steeple into the sky stands there as a silent majestic sentinel, making us aware of the presence of God in all of creation and to the reality of that presence in our everyday lives.

July 26. The WORD for today is Song of Thanks... For the fruits of God’s creation and the gifts to every nation, thanks be to God. For the ploughing, sowing, reaping, silent growth while we are sleeping, for the harvest of God’s spirit, for the good we all inherit, thanks be to God. For the wonders that astound us, for the truths that still confound us, most of all, that love has found us, thanks be to God.

July 27. The WORD for today is Virtues... In the Letter to the Colossians we learn that because we are God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, we are to clothe ourselves with heartfelt mercy and kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. We are to bear with one another and forgive whatever grievance we have for one another, as we are forgiven.

July 28. The WORD for today is Understanding Heart... Usually wisdom comes with age. One grows wiser through life’s experiences. Yet, there can be exceptions. King Solomon, because of his youth, prayed for wisdom. “O Lord, my God, give your servant an understanding heart to judge your people and to distinguish right from wrong.” His prayer was answered and he was given wisdom.

July 29. The WORD for today is Two Sisters... Luke’s Gospel relates the story of two sisters, Mary and Martha. The words of Jesus to Martha ring true in many of our lives: “anxious about many things.” And we may wonder why Mary’s part is the better part. Perhaps because it is the inner peace that we all desire in the midst of our hectic lives.

July 30. The WORD for today is Foundation of Life... The founder of the Jesuits, St. Ignatius Loyola, built the spiritual life on this principle and foundation: that God made us to give him glory and praise, and to serve him. Everything else is created for us to lead us to that end. If it leads us away from that end, we are to put it aside.

July 31. The WORD for today is Psalm 25... To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. Make me know your ways. Teach me your paths; make me walk in your truth and teach me for you are my God and Savior. In you I hope all day long because of your goodness, O Lord, my God. To you, O Lord, I lift up my heart and soul.

August 1. The WORD for today is Time for Everything... There is, indeed, a time for all things and for all the great rites of passage: weddings, graduations, retirements: a time for anniversaries and reunions; a time for our first breath and our last. Through it all and in between there is the precious present moment to do the simple ordinary things.

August 2. The WORD for today is Our Capacity for Revival... We die a thousand deaths-the small ones of our ups and downs. Yet, in all these, we have a marvelous capacity for revival. How dull and hopeless life can seem on any given day, only to become exciting the next. All our “exits” of death can become our “entrances” to new life filled with hope.

August 3. The WORD for today is To be Born Again Daily... Because of our capacity to bounce back from our setbacks we are all the more determined to live as well as we can. Each day we come to life again. Daily we are redeemed in unspoken rituals of renewal, for we are made in the image and likeness of God-a God not of death but of life.

August 4. The WORD for today is Letter to the Romans... Who will separate us from the love of God? Trials or distress, persecution or sword, hunger or danger? From all these we are victors because of him who loved us. For I am certain that neither death nor life will be able to separate us from the love of God that comes to us in Christ Jesus our Lord.

August 5. The WORD for today is Ritual of Renewal... The ritual of renewal has many names: born again, healing, or simply getting our act together. The urge to reassemble the fragments of our lives into a whole is the same. Daily we get up and go to work in the construction business of building, repairing, and remodeling the home of our very being, created in God’s everlasting image.

August 6. The WORD for today is Transfiguration... On this day some Christian churches celebrate the feast of the Transfiguration-an event that pointed to the eventual death and resurrection of Jesus-witnessing the power of life over death. This feast of the Transfiguration can remind us of God’s creative energy and power at work in our lives.

August 7. The WORD for today is Cycle of Personal Seasons... Though much of our lives and planning revolve around the four seasons, there is also for each of us a cycle of personal seasons: a productive time and a fallow time; a time to generate ideas and a time to make them work; a time to get organized and a time to let go; a time for work and a time to rest; a time to reflect and a time to pray.

August 8. The WORD for today is Work and Prayer... An older monk wanted to show a younger monk the need for balance of work and prayer life. They went for a rowboat ride. The older monk was at the oars. He began using only one oar and started to go in circles. “This is what happens,” he said, “when we try to work without prayer. We go in circles never reaching the other shore.

August 9. The WORD for today is Word of God... The word of God is living and effective, sharper than any two-edge sword, penetrating even between soul and spirit, joints and marrow, and able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart. No creature is concealed from God’s word. Everything is exposed to the eyes of God to whom we must render and account. (Heb. 4)

August 10. The WORD for today is Clay in the Potter's Hands... God asked Jeremiah the prophet (chapter 18) to watch a potter at work-how he kept shaping and reshaping the clay into a desired object. Then the Lord said: “Like clay in the potter’s hands, so are you in my hands.” Though we are free creatures, there are times it is best to place ourselves in God’s hands.

August 11. The WORD for today is Storm at Sea... On one occasion, Jesus came walking toward the apostles during a storm at sea. They were terrified. Jesus reassures them: “It is I. Do not be afraid.” This past event, ever present with us during our own “storms at sea,” whatever they may be, remind us that the Lord is always near to allay all fear.

August 12. The WORD for today is Travels of Life... Summer time is traveling time, a time for searching new places, desiring new experiences. Time for expanding our horizons, yet always to be reminded (in the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson): “Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we will find it not.”

August 13. The WORD for today is Prayer as we Travel... Glory and praise to the power of God that made the mountains rise, that spread the flowing seas abroad and built the lofty skies. Glory and praise to the wisdom of God that ordained the sun to rule the day; the moon shines full at God’s command and all the stars obey.

August 14. The WORD for today is Song of Praise... Glory and praise to the goodness of God who fills the earth with food, who formed all creatures with his word and then pronounced them good; whose wonders are displayed wherever I turn my eye, surveying the ground I tread or gazing upon the sky. With eyes of faith to see within each rock and leaf and tree; the marvels of God’s loving goodness is everlasting-Glory Be.

August 15. The WORD for today is Mary's Assumption... Mary, the Mother of Jesus, as our model of faith is also an image of our future. She already shares in her Son’s victory over death. As a beautiful human being, she is with God and as such constitutes an image for us, who hope to be where she is. She intercedes for us on our journey of faith.

August 16. The WORD for today is Psalm 145... O God, you are good to all and have compassion on all your works. All your works give you thanks and your faithful ones bless you. The eyes of all look hopefully to you and you give them bread in due season. You open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. You are just in all your ways.

August 17. The WORD for today is Glory of Creation... There is not a plant or flower below but makes God’s glories known: the clouds arise and tempests blow by orders from his throne. All that borrows life from God is always in his care. Everywhere that we can be, God is present there. Awareness and wonder of how it came to be and endless praise and honor to God-all glory be.

August 18. The WORD for today is Woman of Great Faith... When asked by a Canaanite woman to heal her sick daughter, Jesus told her that his mission was only to the lost sheep of Israel. But the woman replied: “Please, Lord, even the puppy dogs eat the leavings that fall from their master’s table.” To this Jesus responded: “Woman, you have great faith. Your wish will come to pass.”

August 19. The WORD for today is Pearl of Great Price... The Pearl, a novel by John Steinbeck, is a story of a fisherman who found a pearl beyond price. With the pearl he hoped to buy peace and happiness for himself, his wife, and little son. Instead, he found that peace and happiness are not to be purchased. They are themselves pearls beyond price that lie within us, only to be discovered.

August 20. The WORD for today is Praise for the Morning... God of mercies, Daystar of heaven, Dawn ending our darkness, Sun of salvation, Lord enthroned in splendor, bless the hours before us and stay with us. While there is daylight may we work to please you, building a city fit to be your dwelling, home for all peoples, haven of rest for all.

August 21. The WORD for today is Book of Judith... A new song I will sing to my God. O Lord, great are you and glorious, wonderful in power, unsurpassable in all things. Let all your creatures serve and praise you; for you spoke and they were made, you sent forth your spirit and they were created. No one can resist your word, O Lord, my God.

August 22. The WORD for today is God's Creative Word... Through the Word the galaxies were spun out into space and the heavenly bodies speed through the darkness with precision. Through the Word white gleaming mountain peaks soar above the clouds, meandering rivers wind their way to the seas, and tall corn sways in the wind under the hot summer sun. Through the Word we all came into being.

August 23. The WORD for today is Word of Mercy... Down from everlasting mystery the Eternal Word came to other mystery, came to be one with us. And while among us he spoke of lilies of the field, birds of the air, of lost coins and lost sheep, of widows and the tears of a public sinner who received mercy from the Word of mercy.

August 24. The WORD for today is Word Incarnate... Coming among us the Eternal Word Incarnate spoke our human language: words of rebuke and forgiveness, of healing and comfort. He told unforgettable stories of a prodigal son, his compassionate father, and not-so-understanding brother. These stories are fascinating and timely because they are really the stories of our own lives.

August 25. The WORD for today is Letter to the Romans... How deep are the riches and wisdom and the knowledge of God! How inscrutable his judgments, how unsearchable his ways! For who has known the mind of God? Who has been his counselor? For from him and through him and for him all things are. To God be the glory forever.

August 26. The WORD for today is Words Unforgettable... The most unforgettable words of Jesus are memorable not just for their mastery of language, but because they pierce us to the heart-words of infinite and human tenderness: “Come to me all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.” “I am the vine, you are the branches.” “I am the Bread of Life.” “Live on in my love.”

August 27. The WORD for today is Psalm 104... The most unforgettable words of Jesus are memorable not just for their mastery of language, but because they pierce us to the heart-words of infinite and human tenderness: “Come to me all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.” “I am the vine, you are the branches.” “I am the Bread of Life.” “Live on in my love.”

August 28. The WORD for today is Word that Converts Us... One aspect of God’s word is that it contains the thunder and power to challenge us strongly, yet contains the gentle whispering of tenderness to persuade us. Of this St. Augustine reflected: “You have called out to me and shattered my deafness. I have tasted you and I hunger and thirst for you.”

August 29. The WORD for today is Psalm 131... Lord, my heart is not proud; nor are my eyes haughty. I do not busy myself with great matters, with things too sublime for me. Rather, I have quieted my soul. Like a child in its mother’s arms, so is my soul within me. Hope in the Lord always, now and for all ages. Amen.

August 30. The WORD for today is The God of Light... O God, Creator of light, open my eyes so I can see your divine light that penetrates our world, revealing infinite possibilities. Make my eyes gentle and my heart all-embracing so that I can know the radiance, the shimmering tide of light that offers timelessness and transcendent love.

August 31. The WORD for today is Psalm 128... Happy are all who fear the Lord, who walk in the ways of God. What your hands provide, you will enjoy. You will be happy and prosper, like a fruitful vine your wife within your home, like olive plants your children around your table. Just so will they be blessed who fear the Lord.

September 1. The WORD for today is God's Creation... One of the pathways to achieve a love of God is by understanding the work of his hand which is the natural universe. Knowing how the universe functions is crucial to a religious person because this is the world that God created.

September 2. The WORD for today is Psalm 104... Bless the Lord, my soul! Lord, my God, you are great indeed! You are clothed in majesty and glory, robed in light as with a cloak. You spread out the heavens like a tent. You make the clouds your chariot; you travel on the wings of the wind. You make the winds your messengers.

September 3. The WORD for today is Native American Prayer... O great Spirit, make me wise so that I may understand the things you have taught my people. Let me learn the lessons you have hidden in every leaf and rock. Make me always ready to come to you with clean hands and straight eyes, so that when life fades my spirit may come to you without shame.

September 4. The WORD for today is Letter to the Romans... Your love must be sincere. Detest what is evil, cling to what is good. Love one another with the affection of brothers and sisters. Anticipate each other in showing respect. Do not grow slack but be fervent in spirit; he whom you serve is the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient under trial, persevere in prayer.

September 5. The WORD for today is Small Inner Voice... The more one is drawn into the whirlwind of human activity and the more one’s days and nights are preoccupied by the sheer business of living, the more distant can become the still inner voice. It is all that a discreet and self-effacing God permits in dealing with us.

September 6. The WORD for today is Book of Wisdom... The Greek word for wisdom is “Sophia” and so she is addressed. “Now with you, O God is Wisdom, who knows your works and was present when you made the world…Send her to us, O God, that she may be with us and work with us, for she knows and understands all things, and will guide us in all our works and safeguard us by her glory.”

September 7. The WORD for today is Work... One may ask: “Is work a burden or a blessing?” Genesis 3 reminds us well of the burden of work. “You will have to work hard and sweat to make the soil produce anything.” But we also ask the Lord “to bless the work of our hands.” We are sharers in God’s work of creation-and God’s work of love.

September 8. The WORD for today is Mary's Birthday... Today, some Christian churches remember the birthday of Mary, the mother of Jesus, recalling that in God’s providence, a very special person was prepared to conceive and give birth to the long awaited Savior of the world. For this she is venerated in a very special way on this day.

September 9. The WORD for today is Letter to the Philippians... “In everything you do, act without grumbling or arguing; prove yourselves innocent and straightforward, children of God beyond reproach in the midst of a twisted and depraved generation, among whom you shine like the stars in the sky.”

September 10. The WORD for today is True Happiness... The words of Psalm 1 echo through the ages: “Happy are they who do not follow the counsel of the wicked, nor go the way of sinners. Rather, the law of the Lord is their joy. They are like a tree planted near streams of water that yields its fruit in season; its leaves never wither; whatever they do prospers.”

September 11. The WORD for today is Psalm 113... Praise, O servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord! From the rising of the sun to its setting praised be the name of the Lord! High above all nations is the Lord, above the heavens God’s glory. Who is like the Lord, O God, who from on high stoops down to look on heaven and earth?

September 12. The WORD for today is The Way of Conscience... Conscience is at the core of human dignity. Each time we think and act conscientiously, we strengthen our moral sense and become better persons. Each time we follow our conscience we are using a power that God has given us. Conscience is the sanctuary where we are alone with God

September 13. The WORD for today is Wonder and Awe... Though it is said that Albert Einstein was an unbeliever, he said some truly amazing things about God’s universe. For example; “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. The person who can no longer pause to ponder and stand wrapped in awe, is as good as dead; that person’s eyes are closed.”

September 14. The WORD for today is Life Like a Weaving... My life is but a weaving between my Lord and me. Often times he weaves pain and sorrow and I in foolish pride forget he sees the upper and I the underside. Not until the loom is silent and the shuttles cease to fly, shall God unroll his handiwork and explain the reason why. The dark threads are as needful in the Weaver’s skillful hand, as the threads of gold and silver in the pattern he has planned.

September 15. The WORD for today is Forgiveness... In Matthew 18, Peter asks the Lord: “When my brother wrongs me, how often must I forgive him? Seven times?” Jesus replies: “No. Not seven times but seventy times seven times.” The kingdom of God is like a king who forgave a large debt and not like the official’s failure to forgive a small debt.

September 16. The WORD for today is God's Care for Us... In the first letter of Peter we hear: “In your everyday dealings with one another, clothe yourselves with humility, because God is stern with the arrogant but to the humble he shows kindness. Bow humbly under God’s almighty hand, so that in due time he may lift you high. Cast all your cares on the Lord for he cares for you.”

September 17. The WORD for today is The Gifts of God... An early Christian theologian writes: “was not this entire visible universe made for your dwelling? For you the heavens were embellished with the brilliance of the sun, moon, and stars; the earth adorned with flowers, groves, and trees. Everything in air, sea, and sky-all created for you.”

September 18. The WORD for today is Psalm 57... My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready. I will sing, I will sing your praise. Awake, my soul, awake all stringed instruments; I will wake the dawn. I will thank you Lord among the people, for your love reaches to the heavens and your truth to the skies.

September 19. The WORD for today is Isaiah 66... Thus says the Lord: the heavens are my throne and the earth is my footstool. What kind of house can you build for me? What is to be my resting place? My hand made all these things, when all of them came to be, says the Lord. This is the one of whom I approve: the lowly and afflicted one who obeys me.

September 20. The WORD for today is Grandeur of Creation... From Psalm 19: “The heavens proclaim the glory of God and the firmament shows forth the work of God’s hands.” Day unto day takes up the story and night unto night makes known the message. No speech, no word, no voice is heard, yet their span extends through all the earth, their words to the utmost bounds of the earth.

September 21. The WORD for today is St. Matthew... Jesus saw a man named Matthew sitting at a table in a tax office and said to him: “Follow me.” And Matthew rose and followed the Lord. Later on Jesus sat at the table in Matthew’s house and many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus. Perhaps others, too, followed as Matthew did.

September 22. The WORD for today is isaiah 55... Seek the Lord while he may be found, call him while he is near…turn to the Lord for mercy, to our God, who is generous in forgiving. For my thoughts are not your thoughts nor are my ways your ways, says the Lord. As high as the sky above the earth, so are my ways above your ways and my thoughts above your thoughts.

September 23. The WORD for today is True Value... It is good to have the money needed for life’s necessities and it is also good to check once in a while to make sure we haven’t lost the things that money can’t buy - things of true value: a child’s smile, a sunrise, its trip across the sky, its setting, the lasting value of friendship and inner peace. In short, all the priceless valuables money can’t buy.

September 24. The WORD for today is Gardening... Gardening is such a mixture of mistakes and successes. Often enough the mistakes are the most important. Rather than being discouraged by them, they can encourage us to understand the rhythms and patterns of life. The gardens of our lives can be places of rest, of quiet contemplation, and sources of nourishment for mind and body.

September 25. The WORD for today is God's Loving Care... From a book on landscapes: I realized that total spiritual hopelessness cannot be possible in a universe that affords sights like the Grand Canyon and other natural wonders. I realized that “whatever had charge” of things must be fundamentally kind and forgiving. For the believer “the one in charge” is loving provident God in whom we live and move and have our being.

September 26. The WORD for today is Making Choices... Each day we are given opportunities to make choices, to exercise our responsibility of freedom. One is reminded of the gentlemen who gave a beggar some spare change. Wondering how the beggar would use it, the gentlemen thought: “I gave the money not as a test but as a choice, a chance.

September 27. The WORD for today is Love for the Poor... A man in the seventeenth century was irresistibly drawn to the plight of the poor in his time. His spirit lives on today in the religious congregation he founded, the Vincentians, and through the work of the St. Vincent de Paul Society. May the spirit of St. Vincent de Paul lead us to help those in most need.

September 28. The WORD for today is Together in Peace... If only we would see each other as the agents of each other’s happiness, we could occupy the earth-our common habitation-in peace and move forward confidently together to our common goal. We can, if we would see each other as a means and opportunity instead of an obstacle to each other’s peace and happiness.

September 29. The WORD for today is Challenge... “Make my joy complete,” says St. Paul to the Philippians, “by your oneness in mind and body, possessing one love, united in spirit and ideals. Never act out of rivalry or conceit. Rather, let all sides think humbly of others as superior to themselves, each of you looking to the interests of others rather than your own.”

September 30. The WORD for today is The Bible... St. Jerome, an early Christian writer, had a deep love for God’s word. He wanted it to be available to more people, so he translated it into Latin from Hebrew and Greek. Today the Bible can be read in almost every conceivable language and is quite easily attainable. The challenge for all of us is to translate it into the language of the heart whereby we become the living Word of God.

October 1. The WORD for today is Psalm 145... Everyday I will bless you, O Lord, I will praise your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and highly to be praised; God’s greatness is unsearchable. The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness, good to all and compassionate, near to all who call upon him.

October 2. The WORD for today is Angels to Guard Us... Our knowledge and interest in angels that guard us is based on Psalm 91. “He will give his angels charge of you to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up lest you dash your foot against a stone.” May your guardian angel be with you today

October 3. The WORD for today is Letter to the Philippians... Dismiss all anxiety from your minds. Present your needs to God in every form of prayer and in petitions full of gratitude. Then God’s own peace which is beyond all under-standing will stand guard over your hearts and minds in Jesus our Lord.

October 4. The WORD for today is Through Me... Through me let there be kind words, a warm smile, a caring heart. Through me let there be a willingness to listen and a readiness to understand. Through me let there be dependability, steadfastness, trust, and loyalty. Through me let there be compassion, mercy, and love.

October 5. The WORD for today is Prayer of St. Francis... In song and praise, his words echo through the years: “Lord, make me a channel of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me bring love. Where there is injury, your pardon, Lord. Where there is doubt, true faith in you. O Master, grant that I may seek so much to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love with all my soul.”

October 6. The WORD for today is Our Needs... All we need is the Wisdom of God for life’s hardest decisions and the Grace of God for life’s most difficult situations. All we need is the Comfort of God for life’s deepest sufferings and pain. And for all life’s needs, great and small, there is the ever-present, merciful Love of God.

October 7. The WORD for today is Difficult Moments... Whatever the worst thing you may have to face in life, give it all to God and trust that good will come from it. For out of the death of his own beloved Son came a river of mercy, hope and life, love and forgiveness-an unending supply of blessing for any thirsty person to drink and be satisfied.

October 8. The WORD for today is Letter to the Philippians... Never let evil talk pass your lips; say only the good things that others need to hear, things that will really help them. In place of bitterness, anger, harsh words, slander, and malice of every kind, be kind to one another, compassionate, mutually forgiving, just as God has forgiven us in Jesus our Lord.

October 9. The WORD for today is Our Journey of Faith... Someone has said that it is not so important where a person stands as the direction in which he is moving. The story of the Good Samaritan directs us to move on the road of compassion: to comfort those in need, to forgive those who hurt us, and to appreciate those we take for granted. These are the steps that move us along on our journey of faith.

October 10. The WORD for today is Psalm 67... God, be merciful to us and bless us; look on us with kindness, so that the whole world may know your will, so that all nations may know your salvation. May the nations be glad and sing for joy, because you judge the people with justice and guide every nation on earth.

October 11. The WORD for today is Self-Awarenss... All of us are here not by chance but by God’s choosing. God’s hand formed us and made us the persons that we are. God compares us to no one else. We are one-of-a-kind. God has allowed us to be here at this time in history to fulfill a special purpose for this generation.

October 12. The WORD for today is Psalm 15... O Lord, who shall dwell in your tent? Who shall live on your holy mountain? He who walks blamelessly and does justice; who thinks the truth in his heart and slanders not with his tongue; who harms not his neighbor. The one who does these things shall never be disturbed.

October 13. The WORD for today is Friendship... A friend is the one you contact when there is good news and the one you alert when there is need for prayer. A friend is one you confide in when there is a burden to be shared and one you involve when there are special plans being made. And one you thank God for each time you count your blessings.

October 14. The WORD for today is Psalm 23... There is always comfort to know that the Lord is our Shepherd. There is nothing we lack. Beside restful waters he leads us, refreshing our souls. There is no reason to be over worried, fearful, and anxious, for our Shepherd guides us in right paths. And even though we walk in the dark valley, he is at our side to give us courage.

October 15. The WORD for today is A Woman from Avila... Today, some churches remember St. Teresa of Avila in Spain, a mystic, a vibrant woman, beautiful, talented, outgoing, wise, and practical. Among her many writings are these words: “If you would progress a long way on the spiritual journey, the important thing is not to think much but to love much; to please God in everything.

October 16. The WORD for today is Stewards of the Earth... All praise to you, O Lord, of all creation. You made the world and it is yours alone. The planet Earth you spun in its location amid the stars adorning heaven’s dome. We lease the earth but for a life’s duration; yet for this life it is our cherished home. Truly, we are stewards of this earth, your creation.

October 17. The WORD for today is Psalm 19... The laws of God are perfect. They protect us, make us wise and give us joy and light. They are pure, eternal, just-more desirable than gold, sweeter than honey from the honeycomb. For they warn us away from harm and give success to those who obey them.

October 18. The WORD for today is God's Healing Word... Mary, the Mother of Jesus, as our model of faith is also an image of our future. She already shares in her Son’s victory over death. As a beautiful human being, she is with God and as such constitutes an image for us, who hope to be where she is. She intercedes for us on our journey of faith.

October 19. The WORD for today is Psalm 96... Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all you lands. Tell God’s glory among the nations; among the peoples, his wondrous deeds. For great is the Lord and highly to be praised; awesome is the Lord beyond all gods. Give to the Lord the glory due his name! Bring gifts and enter his courts!

October 20. The WORD for today is Stewards of Creation... With wondrous grace, O Lord, you clothed the earth in splendor; with teeming life you filled the sea and land. Instill in us a sense of awe and wonder when we behold the bounty of your hand. Then when we hear the voice of bird and thunder, we hear the voice our faith can understand.

October 21. The WORD for today is Psalm 8... Lord, our God, the whole world tells the greatness of your name. Your glory reaches beyond stars. I see your handiwork in the heaven; the moon and stars you set in place. Who are we that you remember us, that you care for us? You give us charge of the earth, laying all at our feet.

October 22. The WORD for today is Caretakers of the Earth... To tend the earth is our entrusted duty, for earth is ours to use and not to abuse. O gracious Lord, true source of all resources, forgive our greed that wields destruction’s sword. Then let us serve as wise and faithful stewards, while earth gives glory to creation’s Lord.

October 23. The WORD for today is Words of Glory from the Psalms... Be still and know that I am God. To you alone, O Lord, to you alone and not to us must glory be given because of your constant love and faithfulness. Lord, you have been our refuge age after age. Before the mountains were born and the earth came to be, you were God from all eternity and forever.

October 24. The WORD for today is Psalm of Praise and Lament... The 150 Psalms weave a tapestry with threads of praise and lament. Praise of our greatness as God’s creation. Lament of our nothingness without God who made and sustains us. All of creation is for us, yet we are fragile as autumn leaves. We hold ourselves in the balance of praise and lament.

October 25. The WORD for today is The Joy of the Moment... We can spend so much time fretting about the past and things that cannot be changed, and worrying about the future and things which may never happen, that we lose the joy and fullness of the present moment. In the enjoyed present moment there is no room for anxious worry or fretful regrets.

October 26. The WORD for today is Psalm 18... O Lord, my rock, my fortress, my strength, you are my rock of refuge, my shield, my stronghold. Praised be the Lord! I am safe from my enemies. The Lord lives! Blessed be my rock of salvation! Extolled be God, my savior, who shows kindness to the anointed of the Lord.

October 27. The WORD for today is Blessing on True Union... Whether in marriage or friendship, “may God bless us with enough hope to keep the fresh morning in our love and fear enough to keep us holding hands in the dark. Unity enough to keep our roots entwined and separation enough to keep us reaching for each other. Harmony enough to keep romance in our song and discord enough to keep fine tuning the symphony of our union.”

October 28. The WORD for today is A Sense of Mission... Discover a sense of mission that life be important and purposeful for you rather than dull and aimless; for an uncommitted person is a person without direction in life-like a boat without a rudder with plenty of power but no direction. So, move forward in the hope of what can be accomplished.

October 29. The WORD for today is The Good We Do... There is no limit to the good a person can do, if he or she does not care who gets the credit. So, what you do, what you say, what you are, may help others in ways you never know. Your influence, like your shadow, extends where you may never be. A simple gesture of kindness is without measure.

October 30. The WORD for today is The Measure of Things... What appears to be weakness is actually strength. Is not gentleness stronger than cruel force? Patience stronger than aggressive behavior? Mercy stronger than revenge and love the stronger over hatred? St. Paul advises us: “Set your hearts on the greater gifts and the greatest of these is love.”

October 31. The WORD for today is The Ways of God... How great are God’s riches! How deep God’s wisdom and knowledge! Who can explain his decisions? Who can understand God’s ways? As Scripture says: “Who knows the mind of the Lord? Who is able to give God advice? For all things were created by him and things exist through him and for him.” To God be the glory forever.

November 1. The WORD for today is The Saints... Some Christian churches today remember the saints - men, women, children of every age and walk of life who have gone before us marked with the sign of faith; those who fought the good fight of faith, who ran the race to the end, and received the crown of life. They urge us on to do likewise.

November 2. The WORD for today is Our Departed Loved Ones... Almost every city or small town has that special place where loved ones are laid to rest. We remember them today in a very special way. We trust that they are at rest in the peaceful embrace of God’s love, as we await in joyful hope the coming of our Lord and Savior, leading us to paradise.

November 3. The WORD for today is Psalm 16... I bless the Lord who counsels me; even in the night my heart exhorts me. I set the Lord ever before me; with the Lord at my right hand I shall not be disturbed. Therefore, my heart is glad and my soul rejoices; my body, too, abides in confidence. You will show me the path of life, fullness of joy in your presence.

November 4. The WORD for today is Psalm 131... O God, you are my God whom I seek; for you my body pines and my soul thirsts like the earth, parched, lifeless, and without water. Thus have I gazed toward you in the sanctuary to see your power and your glory, for your kindness is a greater good than life. My lips shall glorify you.

November 5. The WORD for today is Letter to the Romans... Your love must be sincere. Detest what is evil, cling to what is good. Love one another with the affection of brothers and sisters. Anticipate each other in showing respect. Do not grow slack but be fervent in spirit. Rejoice in hope, be patient under trial, persevere in prayer.

November 6. The WORD for today is God's Unfolding Word... God says it well with rainbows and flowers, rice and wheat and the glory of sunsets. God’s word unfolds in the charm of children, the beauty of brides, and the ever-newness of youth. God speaks in the prayers of a tree’s uplifted branches, in the mystery of silent rocks and sand dunes, and in the joy of friendship. All these things unfold in words of praise and glory.

November 7. The WORD for today is Prayer for a Friend... I said a prayer today and I know God must have heard. I felt the answer in my heart although God spoke no word. I did not ask for wealth or fame. I knew you would not mind. I asked for treasures of a far more lasting kind: for health and blessings and friends to share the way and be near you all through the day.

November 8. The WORD for today is Letter of Peter... As generous distributors of God’s manifold grace, put your gifts at the service of one another, each in the measure that one has received. The one who speaks is to deliver God’s message. The one who serves is to do it with the strength provided by God. Each person is giving God glory.

November 9. The WORD for today is Psalm 90... In the morning fill us with your love; we shall exult and rejoice all our days. Give us joy to balance our affliction for the years when we knew misfortune. Let your glory shine on us and your favor be upon us; give success to the work of our hands; give success to the work of our hands.

November 10. The WORD for today is Book of Wisdom... Resplendent and unfading is Wisdom and she is readily perceived by those who love her and found by those who seek her. She hastens to make herself known in anticipation of our desires. All who watch for her at dawn shall not be disappointed, for they shall find her sitting by their gates.

November 11. The WORD for today is Psalm 17... I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me; hear my word. Show your wondrous kindness, O Savior of those who flee to you. Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings from those who would harm me. Reveal your wonderful love and save me.

November 12. The WORD for today is First Letter to the Corinthians... Love is patient, kind, and not jealous. Love does not put on airs; it is not snobbish. Love is never rude, self-seeking, prone to anger, neither does it brood over injuries. Love does not rejoice in what is wrong but rejoices with the truth. There is no limit to love’s forbearance, to its truth, its hope, its power to endure.

November 13. The WORD for today is An American Saint... Love is patient, kind, and not jealous. Love does not put on airs; it is not snobbish. Love is never rude, self-seeking, prone to anger, neither does it brood over injuries. Love does not rejoice in what is wrong but rejoices with the truth. There is no limit to love’s forbearance, to its truth, its hope, its power to endure.

November 14. The WORD for today is Mystery of God's Presence... In our search for truth we sow seeds of division and controversy. We take sides. But ultimately, the truth is the mystery of God’s presence. Amid confusion we can only pray: “O God, you are my rock; upon you I rest.” Every other aspect of truth pales in the light of this one truth - the mystery of God’s presence.

November 15. The WORD for today is Doing the Right Thing... The wise man of India, Gandhi, wrote: “It is the action of doing the right thing that is important. It may not be in your power, in your time, that there will be fruit. You may never know what results come from your action. But that does not mean you stop doing the right thing. Without action, there will be no results, no fruit.”

November 16. The WORD for today is Courage... Literally, courage means “to act with the heart.” The opposite, fear, is a powerful emotion that stops us from doing what we know in our hearts to be the right thing. Franklin D. Roosevelt called fear “that nameless, unreasoning terror which paralyzes our needed efforts to convert our retreats into advances.” Courage lifts us up out of that paralysis.

November 17. The WORD for today is Psalm 63... O God, you are my God, for you I long; for you my soul is thirsty. My body longs for you like a dry, weary land without water. So, I gaze on you in the sanctuary to see your strength and your glory. For your love is better than life. I will praise you all my life; in your name I will lift up my hands.

November 18. The WORD for today is Our Life, It's Value... In the words of a short verse: “Each is given a bag of tools, a shapeless mass, a book of rules. And each must make ‘ere life is flown a stumbling block or a stepping stone.” Our life, then, and its true value, lies in using our gifts and talents like stepping stones to help others along the path of life and not as stumbling blocks to obstruct their progress.

November 19. The WORD for today is Psalm 63... My soul shall be filled as with a banquet; my mouth shall praise you with joy. On my bed I remember you, O Lord. On you I muse through the night for you have been my help; in the shadow of your wings I rejoice. My soul clings to you; your right hand holds me fast.

November 20. The WORD for today is Blessing Prayer... May God, in whose presence our ancestors walked, bless us. May God, who has been our shepherd from birth until now, keep us safe. May God, who saves us from all harm, give us peace. May we take comfort in the word spoken to the prophet Jeremiah: “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I dedicated you.”

November 21. The WORD for today is Psalm 24... The earth belongs to the Lord and its fullness; the world and all its people. It is the Lord who sets it on the seas making it firm. Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord? Who shall stand in his holy place? The person with clean hands and pure heart, who desires not worthless things, who does not deceive his neighbor.

November 22. The WORD for today is Psalm 150... The highest form of prayer is praise. Psalm 150 expresses it well. “Praise God in his temple for all the mighty things he has done. Praise God’s supreme greatness. Praise God with trumpets and harps, drums and dancing, flutes and cymbals. Praise the Lord with melodious song. Praise the Lord all living creatures now and forever.”

November 23. The WORD for today is Fruits of the Spirit... In his letter to the Galatians, St. Paul enumerates the gifts of the Spirit; love, joy and peace, long-suffering and kindness, goodness and faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These gifts are freely given but we need to cultivate the soil of our lives to bear these gifts of the Spirit.

November 24. The WORD for today is Our Shepherd King... The words of a song express well the image of God as a Shepherd King. “The King of love my shepherd is, whose goodness fails me never; I nothing lack if I am his and he is mine forever. Where streams of living water flow with gentle care he leads me, and where the green pastures grow with heavenly food he feeds me.”

November 25. The WORD for today is Thanksgiving... The basket of plenty-full and overflowing with God’s gracious goodness-finds an echo in Psalm 100 on thanksgiving. “Worship the Lord with joy; acknowledge that the Lord is God. Enter the temple gates with thanksgiving; give God thanks and praise. The Lord is good, loving us eternally, faithful forever.”

November 26. The WORD for today is Psalm 139... Lord, you know everything I do. You see me, whether I am working or resting. You know my actions. Even before I speak, you already know what I will say. You are all around me on every side; you protect me with your power. Your knowledge of me is too deep, beyond my understanding.

November 27. The WORD for today is Prophet Ezekiel 34... And so says the Lord: “I myself will look after and tend my sheep. I will pasture them and give them rest. The lost I will seek out, the strayed I will bring back. The injured and sick I will heal, shepherding them well.” The Lord, our Good Shepherd, invites us to care for one another in the same way.

November 28. The WORD for today is Echo of Thanksgiving... In the words of a song: “How can I say thanks, O Lord, for all you have done for me; things so undeserved that you came to give your life for me. And the voices of a million angels could not express my gratitude; for all that I am and ever hope to be, I owe it all to thee.”

November 29. The WORD for today is Lightbearers... Before the age of electricity, city streetlights were gas lit by lamplighters with a flaming torch. If one looked at this process from a distance, the lamplighter could not be seen but only his torch and the trail of lights left behind. We, too, may never be seen for any good done but only known for the acts of good will - like a trail of lights - we leave behind.

November 30. The WORD for today is Power of the Word... When Helen Keller made the connection between the word “water” and the cool substance flowing from a pump over her hands, she escaped the isolation of a deaf, mute, and sightless body. Of this experience she wrote: “That living word awakened my soul, gave it light, hope, joy, and set it free.”

December 1. The WORD for today is Psalm 23... You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life. And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for years to come. For the Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

December 2. The WORD for today is Book of Revelation... O Lord, our loving God, how great and wonderful are your deeds! King of the nations, how right and true are your ways! Who will not stand in awe of you, O Lord? Who will refuse to declare your greatness? You alone are holy. All the nations will come and worship you, because your actions are seen by everyone.

December 3. The WORD for today is Advent... Christians around the world prepare during the season of Advent, the season of waiting. It is a time of looking more closely with the eyes of faith and hope at a God who loves us dearly and gives us the gift of his Son. May this Advent season be a time of joyful longing and expectation.

December 4. The WORD for today is Psalm 8... Lord, our God, how awesome is your name through all the earth. You have set your majesty above the heavens…O Lord, when I see your heavens, the work of your hands, the moon and stars in place, I ask myself, who am I that you are mindful of me, a mere mortal, that you care for me?

December 5. The WORD for today is About the Psalms... The book of 150 Psalms teaches us that God created us for happiness and rejoicing and that even tears can lead to jubilation. The Psalms enable us to wind our way through sorrow to joy, through darkness to light, through death to resurrection; for the Psalms sing a song of life to the God of life.

December 6. The WORD for today is Peace and Harmony... During this season of Advent we hear the words of the prophet Isaiah echoing in our own time: “Make ready the way of the Lord.” Each one of us can help prepare that way in our own personal lives, in our homes, in our workplaces. It is the way of peace and harmony.

December 7. The WORD for today is Spirit of Giving... As we continue our Advent preparations for Christmas, we can pause to remember the legend that abounds around a bishop, whom we have come to know as St. Nicholas. At the center of the legend about Nicholas, who seems to live on in the image of Santa Claus, is the spirit of giving. May that spirit be also the center of our lives.

December 8. The WORD for today is God's Favored One... Today we remember the words of the Angel Gabriel to Mary: “Rejoice, highly favored one. God is with you. Blessed are you among women…You have found favor with God. You will conceive and bear a son and give him the name, Jesus.” Mary replied: “I am your servant; let it be done to me as you say.”

December 9. The WORD for today is Psalm 135... Praise to our God, who is good! I know that our Lord is great, greater than all the gods, doing whatever he wishes in heaven and earth, in the seas and in the depths below. He brings storm clouds from the ends of the earth; he makes lightning for the storms and brings out the wind from his storeroom. Praise to the Lord, our God!

December 10. The WORD for today is Psalm 119... Your word, O Lord, will last forever; it is eternal in heaven. Your faithfulness endures through all the ages; you have set the earth in place, and it remains. All things remain to this day because of your command, because they are your servants. Your word is a lamp to guide me and a light for my path.

December 11. The WORD for today is Prophet Isaiah... Words of comfort in this Advent season. “The desert and the parched land will exult. We will see the glory of the Lord and we will be encouraged to say to those who might be frightened…Be strong! Fear not! Here is your God who comes to save you, coming to meet us with joy and gladness, taking away all sorrow and mourning.”

December 12. The WORD for today is Psalm 67... O God, be merciful to us and bless us; look on us with kindness, so that the whole world may know your will; so that all nations may know your salvation. May the peoples praise you, O God. May the nations be glad and sing for joy because you judge the people with justice and guide every nation on earth.

December 13. The WORD for today is Great Light... The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light. For us a child is born, to us a son is given and the government will be upon his shoulders and his name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God. Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Let us walk today in that great light-God’s Word.

December 14. The WORD for today is Light in Darkness... The Carmelite saint and mystic, John of the Cross, wrote of the dark night of the soul. Yet, in that darkness the light of God’s glory and presence was most present to John. The God of all our longings often comes in the darkness and apparent emptiness of our lives. We await that light in the silent darkness of December days and nights.

December 15. The WORD for today is Isaiah 61... ”The spirit of the Lord is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring glad tidings to the lowly, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and release to prisoners, and to announce a year of favor from the Lord.” In many and varied ways these words find fulfillment in our own days.

December 16. The WORD for today is Isaiah 61... I rejoice heartily in the Lord; in my God is the joy of my soul. As the earth brings forth its plants and a garden makes its growth spring up, so will the Lord God make justice and praise spring up before all peoples, before all nations.

December 17. The WORD for today is Letter to the Thessalonians... Rejoice always; never stop praying; render thanks always; do not suppress the spirit; test everything; retain what is good; avoid what even looks like evil. May the God of peace make you perfect in holiness. May you be preserved whole and entire, spirit, soul, and body, irreproachable at the coming of the Lord.

December 18. The WORD for today is Psalm 96... “Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice. Let the sea thunder and all that it holds. Let the fields exult and all that is in them. Let the woodland trees cry out for joy at the presence of God, for the Lord comes to rule the earth with justice and fairness.” And he comes as sure as spring follows winter.

December 19. The WORD for today is Psalm 25... Good and upright is the Lord; thus he shows sinners the way. He guides the humble to justice, he teaches the humble his way. All the paths of the Lord are kindness and constancy toward those who keep his covenant and decrees. My eyes are always toward the Lord who keeps me from all harm.

December 20. The WORD for today is Our Desires... Some of our desires are met; others are not. Sometimes we are satisfied; sometimes we are not. During this Advent season the words of a song express one of our deepest desires: “O come, O come Emmanuel, God-With-Us. Come and ransom us. We are in exile here, until you appear to us” and bring us home to the fulfillment of all our desires.

December 21. The WORD for today is Advent Prayer... O come, Wisdom from on high, to us the path of knowledge show and teach us to follow it. O come, Key of David, open wide for us our heavenly home, make safe our path here on earth, and help us your true peace to know. O come, Root of Jesse’s stem, from our enemies deliver us for we trust in your mighty power.

December 22. The WORD for today is Emmanuel-God With Us... O come, Dayspring from on high and cheer us by drawing near to us. Drive away the dark clouds of night and death’s dark shadow put to flight. O come, Desire of Nations, bind together the hearts of all people, take away all that divides us and truly be our Prince of Peace. O come, Emmanuel, come.

December 23. The WORD for today is Prayer... Lord God in heaven, the day draws near when the glory of your Son will make radiant the night of a waiting world. Through your Son’s coming may the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace and may the gift of your love abide in every human heart.

December 24. The WORD for today is Echo of Greetings... On this day before Christmas, this Christmas Eve, the echo of a million Christmas greetings fill the air. Each greeting, sent like the sound of a bell, rings loud and clear-a message of love and hope, peace and joy, goodwill and cheer. May the sound of that message echo through the new year.

December 25. The WORD for today is Born to Us Our Savior... Today on Christmas Day a child is born to us, a savior is given to us. Let our hearts resound with joy and song. As we gather in our churches this day to give thanks to God for so great a gift, may we in turn share this gift with others, offering to all the joy and peace of this blessed day and season.

December 26. The WORD for today is Crown of Victory... On this day some churches remember St. Stephen, who bore witness to his belief in the Risen Savior. The offering of his life reminds us during this Christmas season that a gift received is a gift to be shared. Stephen gave his life for the Good News, the glad tidings of great joy. In turn he received the crown of victory.

December 27. The WORD for today is Joy... Joy is a very sure sign of the presence of God. Whatever our understanding is of God, as long as it is a power greater than ourselves, that power will fill us with a sense of joy. We will know joy, feel it in our hearts, see it in the eyes of others. Once we know this, we will never want to escape from the reality of our lives.

December 28. The WORD for today is Rejoicing... The best wishes of Christmas greetings continue to echo throughout the twelve days of Christmas. The song of the angels “Glory to God in the highest” and the words “joy to the world” are too vibrant to be silenced too quickly. They ring and bring in the New Year.

December 29. The WORD for today is Giving ... Christmas and its spirit is a giving spirit. Gifts wrapped so elegantly are but symbols of ourselves-our giving selves. Each day is a gift-giving day as we anticipate the needs of each other. Each day is a day to be present to and for others. We are meant to be a “present” - a gift to others.

December 30. The WORD for today is Rejoicing... May the joy of this Christmas season remain in our hearts, for the Lord has come. God, Emmanuel, is with us. Let every heart prepare him room, for truly a child is born to us, a son is given to us. He has come with compassion, with forgiveness for all people, and with joy and peace for the entire world.

December 31. The WORD for today is Courage... As another year comes to an end, we are grateful for all the blessings received from a God who loves us very much. As we face the New Year with renewed hope and anticipation, may we walk with courage, trusting in the goodness within all of us and in the power and grace of God’s Word.

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