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Friday, February 5, 1999

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St. Agatha

Hebrews 13:1-8
Psalm 27
Mark 6:14-29

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i'll never be the same

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." —Hebrews 13:8

It is obviously good news that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever" in that He continues to save, heal, free, and love us. He will always "save those who approach God through Him, since He forever lives to make intercession for them" (Heb 7:25). He "will never desert" us or forsake us (Heb 13:5). Jesus is the same.

It is not as obvious that it is good news that Jesus Christ is the same in expecting us to be holy, judging us, and letting us suffer for Him. For example, Jesus did not prevent Herod from cutting off John the Baptizer's head (Mk 6:16), and Jesus, Who is the same today and forever as He was yesterday, will let us be persecuted and martyred for love of Him. Nonetheless, it is still good news that Jesus is the same.

For us to receive the good news of Jesus being the same, we  ourselves must not be the same today as when we were conceived with our fallen human nature. We must not live the same as we did before we gave our lives to Christ and decided to live our Baptisms. Even after giving our lives to Christ, we must not remain the same but must grow to the full maturity of Christ (Eph 4:15). Because Jesus is the same, we must convert, repent, and grow. We must not be the same.

Prayer:  Father, may I never be the same. May I "grow rather in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" (2 Pt 3:18).

Promise:  "Let marriage be honored in every way and the marriage bed be kept undefiled, for God will judge fornicators and adulterers." —Heb 13:4

Praise:  St. Agatha had two great victories. In her martyrdom, she had victory over death, and in her virginity, over sexual temptations.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 23, 1998

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 27, 1998