Many Christians feel that they don't have to be totally abandoned to the Lord in order to be pleasing to Him and to do His will. They feel that it is sufficient to go to Church and try to live a decent life. The Lord proclaims the very opposite. If we aren't so taken up with following Jesus that it seems we "hate" our wives, children, family, and selves, we will not be able to build God's kingdom and win the war against the evil one (see Lk 14:26ff). If we don't take up the daily cross of self-sacrifice and dying to self, we cannot be disciples of Jesus (Lk 14:27). If we don't renounce all our possessions and be willing to give up anything and everything for Jesus, we cannot be His disciples (Lk 14:33). Furthermore, we should surrender everything to Jesus not reluctantly but cheerfully (2 Cor 9:7) and joyfully (see Phil 2:17).
Give all to Jesus. He gave all to us on the cross. Consider it a privilege to give all. Life in Christ is a life of total giving. Nothing else will do. Look at Jesus crucified. Do a one-minute crucifix novena. Look at a crucifix for at least one minute a day for nine days. Decide to love Jesus with all your heart (Lk 10:27).
Prayer: Father, may the love of Christ impel me to total love (2 Cor 5:14).
Promise: "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 while holding fast to the word of life." —Phil 2:15-16
Praise: St. Charles sold his bed to help those who were dying of a plague.
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, April 4, 1998
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 8, 1998
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