a merciless lifestyle
"And now, Lord, please take my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live." —Jonah 4:3
Jonah prayed to die because he was upset that the Ninevites repented and God spared them. He also prayed to die because a worm ruined his shade tree and he became hot (Jon 4:7-8). Jonah was both merciless and overly concerned about his personal comfort.
These may seem to be two unrelated matters but God's word says there is a connection between our treasures and our hearts (Lk 12:34). Our priorities, pleasures, and lifestyle affect whether our hearts are open or closed, warm or cold. If we love the things of the world, the Father's love has no place in us (1 Jn 2:15). If we are not receiving God's love, we cannot give love to others. We then become hardened and merciless. As we complicate our lifestyle and become more preoccupied with money, pleasure, and comfort, we become more vengeful and merciless. By our selfish lifestyle, we are mass-producing people "without conscience, without loyalty, without affection, without pity" (Rm 1:31).
We must change our lifestyle before we create an even more monstrous, merciless society which aborts its babies, kills its old people, executes its criminals, neglects its poor, and sacrifices its citizens to the god of pleasure and profit.
Prayer: Father, change my heart by changing my lifestyle. Crucify me to the world (Gal 6:14).
Promise: "Forgive us our sins for we too forgive all who do us wrong." —Lk 11:4
Praise: James' life changed when he started praying a daily rosary.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our leaflet Seek First The Kingdom.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 3, 2009
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