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Wednesday, October 13, 1999

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Romans 2:1-11
Psalm 62
Luke 11:42-46

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relentless repentance

"Do you not know that God's kindness is an invitation to you to repent?" —Romans 2:4

Jesus told the religious leaders of His time that they were "neglecting justice and the love of God" (Lk 11:42). Because of their sinful pride, they were spiritually dead. They were "like hidden tombs over which men walk unawares" (Lk 11:44). Paul wrote to the Christians of Rome that they had "hard and impenitent" hearts and were "storing up retribution for that day of wrath" (Rm 2:5).

Religious people usually have repented of their sins. Yet, this is only a beginning. We need to repent to a much greater depth. However, because we have already repented, we think we have finished repenting. Instead of our initial repentance being a catalyst leading to greater repentances, it becomes a vaccination. We use a little repentance to inoculate ourselves so that we never have deep repentance.

To keep our initial repentance from being used against us, we should:

  • go to Confession at least monthly,
  • ask the Sacred Heart of Jesus to reveal the thoughts and reflections of our hearts (Heb 4:12),
  • silently look at a crucifix for at least one minute a day,
  • use the Bible to examine our consciences daily, and
  • ask for the Holy Spirit to convict us of sin (Jn 16:8).

Prayer:  Father, baptize, that is, immerse me in repentance (Lk 3:3).

Promise:  "He will repay every man for what he has done: eternal life to those who strive for glory, honor, and immortality by patiently doing right; wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness." —Rm 2:6-8

Praise:  Steven meditated regularly on the cross of Jesus and began to understand love.

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, The Secret of Confession.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, April 10, 1999

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 16, 1999