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Wednesday, March 6, 2002

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Deuteronomy 4:1, 5-9
Psalm 147
Matthew 5:17-19

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living naturally or supernaturally?

"What great nation is there that has gods so close to it as the Lord, our God, is to us whenever we call upon Him? Or what great nation has statutes and decrees that are as just as this whole law which I am setting before you today?" —Deuteronomy 4:7-8

We tend to:

  • be selfish,
  • cut corners,
  • do things the easy way,
  • stay in our comfort zones,
  • be lax,
  • be permissive,
  • look for loopholes,
  • take the path of least resistance, and
  • do the minimum.

Jesus tells us to:

  • obey carefully (Dt 4:6) and earnestly (Dt 4:9),
  • not swerve to the right or to the left in obeying Him (Dt 5:32),
  • obey the letter of the law and the smallest part of a letter of the law (Mt 5:18),
  • go beyond the letter of the law (see 2 Cor 3:6),
  • take up the cross daily (Lk 9:23),
  • deny ourselves (Lk 9:23),
  • die to ourselves (see Jn 12:24),
  • lay down our lives for Him and His Church (Eph 5:25; 1 Jn 3:16), and
  • love Him with all our hearts, all our souls, all our minds, and all our strength (Lk 10:27; Dt 6:5).

Are we living in the selfish mediocrity of our old, fallen nature or in the love, grace, and truth of our new life in Christ? Choose to live your new life in Baptism. Prepare to renew your baptismal promises at Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday.

Prayer:  Father, make me free, not permissive and mediocre.

Promise:  "Whoever fulfills and teaches these commands shall be great in the kingdom of God." —Mt 5:19

Praise:  Repenting of becoming mediocre and lukewarm in a ministry she had been involved with for many years, Leah saw God give her a new heart and pour out His Spirit on the ministry in a new abundance.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, August 18, 2001

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 25, 2001