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Friday, May 7, 2021

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Acts 15:22-31
Psalm 57:8-10, 12
John 15:12-17

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voluntary slavery

“I no longer speak of you as slaves.” —John 15:15

Jesus calls us, His disciples, “slaves.” Later, He may call us “friends.” To be a friend of Jesus, we must first be His slave. To know what Jesus is doing, we must first obey without knowing what He is doing (Jn 15:15). To be aware of Jesus as Love (1 Jn 4:16), we must first know Him as Lord. God’s Word commands us to “be slaves of Christ the Lord” (Col 3:24).

The idea of being anyone’s slave is disturbing to us. We want to keep our independence. However, there is no such thing as our independence. This is a self-deception. “You must realize that, when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are the slaves of the one you obey, whether yours is the slavery of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to justice” (Rm 6:16). We are automatically slaves to someone or something. The only question is: “Whose slave will we be?”

To be the slave of Jesus means to no longer have a life of our own (see Gal 2:20), but to let ourselves be consumed by the living God (see Heb 12:29). To be a slave of Jesus is a privilege and the highest honor a human being can attain. Jesus, as Master, protects, provides for, and deeply loves us, His slaves.  Jesus “emptied Himself and took the form of a slave” for love of us (Phil 2:7). Will you empty yourself and be His slave for love of Him?

Prayer:  Jesus, I am created to be Your slave. I will only be freed and fulfilled as Your slave. I choose You as Lord. I choose to be Your slave.

Promise:  “It is the decision of the Holy Spirit, and ours too, not to lay on you any burden beyond that which is strictly necessary.” —Acts 15:28

Praise:  As a husband, father and care-giver son, Alfred has grown more dependent on God. He says often: “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord” (Jos 24:15).

Reference:  (For a related teaching on Developing a Deep, Personal Relationship with Jesus, order, listen to, or download our CD 52-1 or DVD 52 on our website.)

Rescript:  "In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat for One Bread, One Body covering the period from April 1,2021 through May 31, 2021 Reverend Steve J. Angi, Chancellor, Vicar General, Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio August 5,2020"

The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.