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Sunday, March 11, 2007

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Third Sunday of Lent

Exodus 3:1-8, 13-15
1 Corinthians 10:1-6, 10-12
Psalm 103
Luke 13:1-9

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cut off date

"Look here! For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree and found none. Cut it down." —Luke 13:7

Maybe you are like the fig tree. You haven't been producing any fruit for the Lord in the last few years. But you're not too concerned about it and you haven't had any big problems for a while. When you read headlines about people murdered or tragic accidents (Lk 13:1, 4), you thank God nothing like that happens to you.

You may be lulling yourself into complacency. This could be the last year for your mediocre, self-centered existence. It may be you are about to get cut down and thrown into the fire (Jn 15:6). You may have wasted your last extension (see Lk 13:8), and the Lord must finally let you reap the wages of doing your own thing (Rm 6:23).

The Lord doesn't want you to be cut down. He even died on the cross to prevent your destruction. You must accept His saving death not just mentally and verbally, but practically. You must live no longer for yourself but for Him Who, for your sake, died and was raised up (2 Cor 5:15).

The Bible and today's readings in particular "have been written as a warning to us, upon whom the end of the ages has come. For all these reasons, let anyone who thinks he is standing upright watch out lest he fall!" (1 Cor 10:11-12)

Prayer:  Father, may I want to bear fruit for You more than I want earthly treasures.

Promise:  "As the heavens are high above the earth, so surpassing is His kindness toward those who fear him." —Ps 103:11

Praise:  Praise Jesus, Suffering Servant and redeeming "Lamb of God, Who takes away the sin of the world!" (Jn 1:29)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 3, 2006 & September 18, 2006

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