2017 Homilies (Written)

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John 13:1-5 (Holy Thursday; As built, Amite #255: 4-13-17)

“Focus”
***( trying to take Poem of the Man God setting and let the people try to envision it…)***It is the year 33….and you now live in Jerusalem… yet you have 2000 years of knowledge in your mind…It is a quite night… the stars are out… it is so clear… heading back to you house…just wanted to walk about the night air… well, you return to the house… it aint much…it is about 12 by 12…all stone… kinda did myself…the roof is made out of thatch…it has a few holes…a little rain gets thru not much… one table on the side… with one candle… small stool…don’t have much, but it works…the door has a few holes, but for the most part does it’s job… you hear a knock at the door… usually you could see who it is… the door is not a perfect seal… so you get up…and open the door… it’s John the Apostle…he has really become your friend…he looks about 18 maybe 20 years of age…he is pure love..the guy could not, nor would want to hurt a fly…he always makes you feel so important…always, always willing to help…always with a smile…even though I am a gentile, leaving in a very Jewish area, southwest side of town…very strict Jews… he has always befriended me…he asked would I like to go to a Passover meal…I remind him… that I am not Jewish…he just smiles…. That’s John…and invites me…we go down the street…nobody is out… a few shadows inside the homes…the huts I call them…a few animals moving about…when we get to a house with a 2nd floor…the steps are on the outside…leading up to a brown door…we head up…he knows just where to go… and when we enter… I see that it is a large room…it must be 15 by 30…it has big table in the middle…made in the shape of a U….must be used for banquets….the table has been set…it is just wooden planks pushed together with benches all around it…it is just us two there… I see on the table off to the side…a pitcher and some towels…but it does not register the reason..maybe to wash our hands after the meal…john motions for me to sit on the other side of the U…(point to it…),,, I no sooner sit…than the door opens…and in walks James…johns brother…he is older, seems more direct… I remember that he is the first to lose his life for the savior… John embraces him and introduces me… I just nod and shake his hand…then the door opens and in comes…Andrew…Peter’s brother…. He looks like a fishermen… he looks weathered… strong…and then following him….James the lesser, I heard he was a prayer warrior… you could sense that…of course, john makes them all feel good…he greets each one…then comes in Nathanial/Bartholomew….he is younger than the others, less john…but he is fairly tall…and then comes in Matthew…I recognize him… the tax guy… a little older than most of the guys…looks very distinguished….i sit back down… and then in comes…it has to be…this one has to be…PETER…YOU CAN TELL…THE WAY HE CARRIES HIMSELF… HE IS BUILT LIKE A ROCK…HE EVEN LOOKS DETERMINED…he has the respect of all the APOSTLES…THERE IS NOT DOUBT WHO THE LEAD DOG IS….he nods to me…but that is about it…and no sooner than I sit…than in comes…it has got to be…it has to be…JUDAS…he looks bad…I heard that he was a very handsome man…but wow…he looks deshelved…he looks worried, I see he is tired…his hair is messed up…his clothes are wrinkled…like he slept in them…the other’s apostles…you can tell…they don’t really say much to him…he begins to walk towards me…. Do I shake his hand…or just nod…I cannot take my eyes off of him….you can feel something NOT GOOD ABOUT HIM…it is tangible… I can help but FOCUS ON HIM…he walks around and sits next to you…all the seats and he picks this one…you want to get up and move down one…but there is no where to go…plus, john asked you to sit there…you don’t want to move down, but your impulse make you do it…but you noticed that you are both on the same bench…they are not separate chairs…but you still slide down one…YOUR FOCUS IS ALLON his presence…you can’t help but look at him…YOU WANT TO SHAKE HIM…YOU WANT TO SHAKE THE DEVIL OUT OF HIM…then…all of a sudden the door opens…and IT CAN’T BE…IT IS HIM… IT IS OUR SAVIOR……YOUR MOUTH DROPS… EVERYONE IN THE ROOM…STOPS AND GIVES HIM…HIS DUE… YOU CAN FEEL HIS PRESENCE… PURE LOVE… YOU FEEL LIKE THAT IS YOUR TRUE FATHER…HIS EYES….ARE BLUE as the sky…his tunic is white…very white…he visit with each of the apostles…less Judas…he just knods…and then he looks at you…HE SMILES…AS IF HE HAD KNOWN ME ALL MY LIFE…AS IF HE HAD KNOWN ME MY IN MY MOTHERS WOMB…there are no secrets with him…I feel embarrassed….a little ashamed…but He sits…and then I realize…that I am still next to Judas… I cannot help but feel…hate toward him…I don’t want to look at him…but I can’t help but stare at him… I HAVE LOST MY FOCUS…THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD HAS WALKED IN…HE IS SITTING ACROSS FROM ME…. I REALIZE THIS IS THE LAST SUPPER…. AND I STILL CAN’T STOP THINKING, LOOKING, STARING, GETTING ANGRY, with Judas…then I hear John and Jesus talking to one another… I am not sure what…. Then peter is speaking to john…but I can’t help but notice judas…I am distracted… I have lost my FOCUS…then john puts his head on jesus’s chest..and ask a question…and I hear Jesus say…the person to whom I dip the morsel and give it to…then I see jesus do just that…then he slid the bread towards Judas… I am stunned… I watch Judas ever so closely…MORTIFIED ABOUT WHAT HE IS ABOUT TO DO… then Judas gets up…I just put my head down…. And they all get up to leave…and then it hits me…. I HAD THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD…RIGHT AT ARMS LENGTH… HE SAT RIGHT THERE (JUST POINT)…GOD… the one who created me…right there…the one who I have read about, studied about…the whole world revolves around…HE IS ABOUT TO GO AND BE BEATEN TO DEATH FOR ME…CRUCIFIED FOR ME…HAVE A CROWN OF THORNS PUT ON HIS HEAD FOR ME…NAILS THROUGH HIS HAND AND FEET…and I FOCUSED ON JUDAS….
B & S… THAT IS WHAT THE GOSPEL IS ABOUT…IT IS ABOUT LOSING FOCUS!!! Scripture is full of people who have lost there FOCUS…peter when he gets out of the boat…and begins to sink because he focused on the wind and NOT JESUS …MM…focusing so much so on the world…she takes counsel with the all the demons…
B & S…how many times in our lives…in our day…just this past week…just yesterday…that we have LOST OUR FOCUS!!! We can be having a Great Day, Great Week, Great Month…all things going our way…somebody say just ONE THING wrong…and we only FOCUS ON THAT WORD, THAT CONVERSATION,…WE LET IT RUIN OUR WHOLE DAY!!! We drive down the road..someone shows us….that we are number one…we could have just gotten a raise , been give a great compliment…had things go well all day…and then we see that, or hear that…and the whole day goes into the tank…you can get up happy, smile going to work, knowing that it will be an easy day…and it is …then one email, text message, phone call… And the whole day is in the ….shh……(don’t say the word…!!!)…and we are ready to take a hostage, quit, or let it ruin our day….
B & S…it is all ABOUT FOCUS!!! How many times… do we let this happen…90 percent of the day is good…10 percent goes south…and we let it tank the whole day…. the devil has won!!! He can win the whole day, the whole week, everything..if he can get just ONE THING TO GO SOUTH…ONE BAD EMAIL, TEXT, PHONE CALL, PASSING COMMENT…IT ONLY TAKES ONE…WHY…BECAUSE WE HAVE LOST OUR FOCUS…
The answer…start each day with HIM… end each day with HIM…keep something on you that is HOlY… BE ON GUARD…GUARD YOUR THOUGHTS…WHICH GUARD YOUR WORDS…WHICH GUARD YOUR ACTIONS…WHICH DICTATE YOUR HABITS…AND YOUR HABIT IS …to not lose YOUR FOCUS…FOCUS ON HIM…HIS MOTHER…THEIR GIFTS TO YOU…YOUR LIFE…YOUR TALENTS…YOUR FAMILY, YOUR CHILDREN…YOUR SOUL!!!!!
AMEN!!!

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