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Saturday, August 18, 2007

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St. Jane Frances de Chantal

Joshua 24:14-29
Psalm 16
Matthew 19:13-15

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idolatry in the home

"Put away the strange gods that are among you and turn your hearts to the Lord." —Joshua 24:23

The Israelites entered the promised land under a covenant to be God's people (Dt 29:11-12). Yet after they had settled into the promised land, they acquired some idols for their new homes. Joshua heard about this, and challenged the Israelites to stop their idolatry and get rid of these false gods (Jos 24:23). Other members of God's people kept false gods in their homes. Jacob's wife Rachel brought idols into her marriage home (Gn 31:19, 30-36). Even David, a man after God's own heart (1 Kgs 15:3), began his marriage to Michal with an idol in his home (1 Sm 19:13, 16).

Today we don't get into statues of idols, but many homes still worship "the god of the present age" (2 Cor 4:4), that is, a lifestyle of comfort, sex, money, power, and secular humanism as presented through the media. Often, today's homes enthrone the TV or home entertainment system. It's not an idol of gold or silver, but it's still surrounded by "worshipers" who eat sacrificial meals (or at least snacks) as they sacrifice their prime time prostrating themselves before the household "statue."

I know the above scenario might be a bit of an exaggeration, but God doesn't take second place to anyone or anything. Idolatry has been rampant throughout history, and it still is today. God demands your exclusive worship. The stones and walls of your home will witness to God about what is first in your life (see Jos 24:26-27). What will they tell God about His place in your life?

Prayer:  Lord, if I can't put You first any other way, may I throw away the TV instead of risking entering hell with it (see Mt 5:29-30).

Promise:  "Let the children come to Me." —Mt 19:14

Praise:  St. Jane Frances de Chantal is an example to those with a married or a religious vocation. St. Vincent de Paul described her as "one of the holiest souls I have ever met."

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 14, 2007

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