God does something for us and we thank Him for doing it. He does it a second time and we thank Him for helping us. He does it a third time and we say: "Look what I did." We shift quickly from giving God the credit to taking the credit for ourselves.
Our perspective is wrong. We ask God to help us, as if we're in charge. Actually we should ask God for the privilege of helping Him. "When you have done all you have been commanded to do, say, 'We are useless servants. We have done no more than our duty' " (Lk 17:10). God doesn't owe us anything except punishment for our sins. Nonetheless, He has taken our transgressions on Himself (Is 53:5), and we owe Him everything. "Everything is grace" (Rm 4:16). "I repeat, it is owing to His favor that salvation is yours through faith. This is not your own doing, it is God's gift; neither is it a reward for anything you have accomplished, so let no one pride himself on it" (Eph 2:8-9).
"Every worthwhile gift, every genuine benefit comes from above" (Jas 1:17). "To the One seated on the throne, and to the Lamb, be praise and honor, glory and might, forever and ever!" (Rv 5:13) "More than this we need not add; let the last word be, He is all in all! Let us praise Him the more" (Sir 43:28-29).
|Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from June 1, 2005 through July 31, 2005.
†Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 20, 2004.