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Thursday, August 9, 2018

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St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross

Jeremiah 31:31-34
Psalm 51:12-15, 18-19
Matthew 16:13-23

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one heart and one voice

"You are not judging by God's standards but by man's." —Matthew 16:23

Peter's mouth spoke the words of heaven, revealed directly from the Father above (Mt 16:16-17). Shortly thereafter, Peter's mouth spoke the words of the kingdom of darkness (Mt 16:22-23). "Blessing and curse come out of the same mouth. This ought not to be" (Jas 3:10). "Does a spring gush forth fresh water and foul from the same outlet?" (Jas 3:11)

We have a civil war raging in our hearts (Jas 4:1ff), and so we are prone to shift between behavior obedient to the Lord and behavior obedient to the world, the flesh, and the devil (1 Jn 2:16).

So we pray: "A clean heart create for me, O God, and a steadfast spirit renew within me" (Ps 51:12). We must beg for a clean heart, one which has God's law written upon it (Jer 31:33) as well as the law of the Spirit (2 Cor 3:3). We must beg Jesus to purify our hearts, so that when we speak from the abundance of our hearts (Lk 6:45), we will speak the words of the Lord, that is, speak prophetically. We beg the Lord God to make us single-hearted for Him (Mt 5:8), so that Jesus might be our Treasure (Mt 13:44), and that where our treasure lies, there our hearts will be (Mt 6:21). Thus we will speak from the abundance of our hearts (Lk 6:45), that is, we will speak of the Lord and not of the world, the flesh, and the devil.

Prayer:  Father, probe my mind and test my heart (Jer 17:10).

Promise:  "I will place My law within them, and write it upon their hearts." —Jer 31:33

Praise:  St. Teresa Benedicta converted from Judaism to the Catholic Church. She always kept her Jewish people dear to her heart, offering her life to God as a sacrifice for their spiritual welfare.

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

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 15, 2017

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