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Monday, June 9, 1997

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St. Ephrem

2 Corinthians 1:1-7
Psalm 34
Matthew 5:1-12

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"How blest are the poor in spirit: the reign of God is theirs. Blest too are the sorrowing." — Matthew 5:3-4

What are your beatitudes? Don't bring up the beatitudes you say you believe in; rather, what are the ones you actually live? If an impartial observer watched you live for a week, what would he conclude were your beatitudes?

For many people, the first beatitude is: "Blest are those who watch TV, they shall be entertained, amused, distracted, and anesthetized." Many lives scream the beatitude: "Blest are they who get what they want." The world propagandizes: "Blest are they who are sexually active (married or not)." The old standard beatitudes are: "Blest are the rich," "Blest are the popular," and "Blest are the comfortable."

Jesus' Beatitudes are not only different; they are contradictory (see Lk 2:34). He not only tells us that His Beatitudes are right but also that ours are wrong. Jesus says we're wrong about life, love, and happiness. We're wrong not just because of ignorance but because of rebellion. We must repent of believing sadness is happiness. We must repent of the disguised slavery of doing our own thing. Jesus' Beatitudes are the revelation of a new life in Christ or the occasion for rebellion against Christ. Repent or rebel!

Prayer:  Father, I will go to Confession and admit I was wrong about life.

Promise:  "He comforts us in all our afflictions and thus enables us to comfort those who are in trouble, with the same consolation we have received from Him." —2 Cor 1:4

Praise:  Ephrem was a teacher, Scripture scholar, prolific songwriter and worship leader, and is a Doctor of the Church.

Reference:  (For more teaching, order our leaflets, The Beatitudes, and TV Addiction.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, November 12, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 10, 1996