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Friday, March 28, 2003

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Hosea 14:2-10
Psalm 81
Mark 12:28-34

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how god planned for us to love him totally

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength." —Mark 12:30

Christianity is not merely about loving God. Before Christ came to earth, many people loved God. Millions of non-Christians throughout the world love God now. Christianity is unlike any other religion, however, because it is about loving God as He is. Only Christians know and believe that God is our Father (Abba), that God is Love (1 Jn 4:8, 16), and that God is Trinity: three Persons in one God. Because we have in Christ entered more deeply into the mystery of God, we are in a position to love God more, or even totally, with all our hearts, all our souls, and all our minds, and all our strength (Mk 12:30).

However, Christ's revelation of God leads us to a total love which is beyond our fallen, self-centered human nature. So the Lord has not only revealed God to us but also has given us a way to receive a new nature in which we share in His divinity (see 2 Pt 1:4). Through Baptism, we receive this new nature capable of total love of God as He is.

In about three weeks, all the Catholics of the world will be invited to renew their baptismal promises. In doing this, we renew our capacity to love totally the all-holy Triune God, Who is Love. Live your last half of Lent accordingly.

Prayer:  Father, teach me total love for You as You are.

Promise:  "Straight are the paths of the Lord, in them the just walk, but sinners stumble in them." —Hos 14:10

Praise:  Dorothy made a promise to remain single for God's kingdom (see Mt 19:12).

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tapes Baptismal Promises on audio AV 83-1, AV 83-3, AV 84-1, AV 84-3 or our two-part video series starting with V-83.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, August 1, 2002

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 7, 2002