"The eye is not satisfied with seeing nor is the ear filled with hearing." —Ecclesiastes 1:8
Few people would dispute the fact that the book of Ecclesiastes is the most depressing book of the Bible. It begins: "Vanity of vanities, says Qoheleth, vanity of vanities! All things are vanity!" (Eccl 1:2) It ends: "Vanity of vanities, says Qoheleth, all things are vanity!" (Eccl 12:8) Ecclesiastes depicts the utter emptiness and hopelessness of life without Christ. However, we who are baptized into Christ have been "delivered from the futile way of life" (1 Pt 1:18) to live the truly new (see 2 Cor 5:17) and absolutely abundant life (Jn 10:10).
If this is true, why are we Christians sometimes as discouraged as anyone else? There are several explanations for post-Christ, post-baptismal despondence. Nevertheless, no matter what the circumstances, to change from vanity to fullness we must renew our Baptisms and "stir into flame the gift of God" (2 Tm 1:6).
Right now, renew your baptismal promises by rejecting Satan, all his works, and all his empty promises. Express your total faith in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Bless yourself with the holy water which reminds us of our Baptism. Baptized into Jesus, our lives are not vain; rather, they are lives of "justice, peace, and the joy that is given by the Holy Spirit" (Rm 14:17).
Prayer: Father, may I renew my Baptism daily, especially on the anniversary of my Baptism. When I get tired for You, may I never get tired of You.
Promise: "Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain wisdom of heart." Ps 90:12
Praise: St. Vincent de Paul served both his parishioners and other priests. Many rich, poor, outcasts, convicts, laity and clergy experienced this man's consuming love of God and neighbor.
Reference: (For a related teaching on Baptismal Promises, order, listen to or download our CD 83-1 or DVD 83 on our website.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 15, 2017
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