For thus says the Lord to the house of Israel: Seek me and live; do not seek Bethel, and do not enter into Gilgal or cross over to Beer-sheba; for Gilgal shall surely go into exile, and Bethel shall come to nothing. Seek the Lord and live, or he will break out against the house of Joseph like fire, and it will devour Bethel, with no one to quench it. Ah, you that turn justice to wormwood, and bring righteousness to the ground!
The one who made the Pleiades and Orion, and turns deep darkness into the morning, and darkens the day into night, who calls for the waters of the sea, and pours them out on the surface of the earth, the Lord is his name,who makes destruction flash out against the strong, so that destruction comes upon the fortress.
They hate the one who reproves in the gate, and they abhor the one who speaks the truth. Therefore because you trample on the poor and take from them levies of grain, you have built houses of hewn stone, but you shall not live in them; you have planted pleasant vineyards, but you shall not drink their wine. For I know how many are your transgressions, and how great are your sins— you who afflict the righteous, who take a bribe, and push aside the needy in the gate.
Therefore the prudent will keep silent in such a time; for it is an evil time.Seek good and not evil, that you may live; and so the Lord, the God of hosts, will be with you, just as you have said. Hate evil and love good, and establish justice in the gate; it may be that the Lord, the God of hosts, will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph.
I hate, I despise your festivals, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the offerings of well-being of your fatted animals I will not look upon. Take away from me the noise of your songs; I will not listen to the melody of your harps. But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an everflowing stream.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations/ ).
Amos rebuked Israel for singing songs to the Lord but denying justice to the poor, saying: “Stop your noisy songs…instead, let justice flow like a stream.”
A little girl in ill-fitting clothes was descending the church steps. Clearly she came from a poor family. A man who disliked religion was passing by and asked her, “If there is a God who loves you as much as you think, wouldn’t that God tell someone to house and clothe you properly? The child answered, “I think God did tell someone, but they weren’t listening; or, maybe, they just forgot.” The child’s response and God’s rebuke to Israel invite me to ask: what kind of a responsibility do I have to the poor? What can one person do?
Trust God for great things; with your five loaves and two fishes he will show you a way to feed thousands. –Horace Bushnell
—Excerpted from Mission, by Fr. Mark Link, S.J. ©2000 RCL Enterprises, Inc., Allen TX. For more prayer resources from Fr. Link, please visit www.staygreat.com
Lord, all that we have comes from you. What do you want me to share with those closet to me and with those that are not known to me by name? Let me be generous in my gift of time, through the resources that bless my life. Let me commit to sharing from my wallet, my closets, the hours in my day. We believe that in serving another we serve you, Lord. Thank you for the gift of joy that comes with such abundance when generosity guides our actions.
—The Jesuit Prayer Team
Please share the Good Word with your friends!