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To: Salvation
The Word Among Us

Saturday, September 23, 2006

1 Corinthians 15:35-37, 42-49

On top of all the other problems that were besetting the church in Corinth, some of the believers there were beginning to dispute the resurrection. No one could describe just how it came about, they reasoned, or what a resurrected body looked like. Lacking such proof, they challenged the very concept of resurrection and tried to discredit Paul’s claim that Jesus was raised from the dead. But, Paul reminded them, the gospel is not simply doctrine; it is power, “the power of God for . . . everyone who has faith” (Romans 1:16).

We don’t have to rely on visual evidence for the resurrection, or even on indisputable arguments. Each of us can know personally that it is real, and that our bodies will one day be transformed to mirror Jesus’ glorified body. We can know it as we see the Holy Spirit at work in us: cleansing our conscience after Confession, giving us peace as we receive the Eucharist, and giving us a sense of closeness with our Father in our prayer lives.

We should never doubt that God is doing something wonderful in each of us! He is always at work, changing us more and more into his likeness. What might some of these changes look like? People may notice a difference in our attitudes, as we become more joyful, peaceful, humble, wise, and gentle. Sometimes we notice changes in ourselves, as we grow less fearful, more compassionate and understanding, or more generous with our time. And sometimes physical changes occur: Our worry lines relax, we stand taller and begin to look others in the eye, or we smile more often.

These changes are only a foretaste, however, of the eternal life we will experience with the Father. But we can be confident that he already sees in us the emergence of the marvelous person he has created each of us to be. Daily, he who raised Jesus from the dead is giving us new life through his Holy Spirit. Resurrection? Absolutely! The small evidences we see of it now encourage us that, one day, we will be raised by the glory of the Father as surely as Jesus was!

“Father, thank you that I am becoming the person you made me to be! Continue to renew me in your Spirit, so that my life may reveal the reality of your resurrection.”

Psalm 56:10-14; Luke 8:4-15

22 posted on 09/23/2006 9:28:52 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body


<< Saturday, September 23, 2006 >> St. Pio of Pietrelcina
1 Corinthians 15:35-37, 42-49 Psalm 56 Luke 8:4-15
View Readings  
"This is the meaning of the parable...hear the word in a spirit of openness, retain it, and bear fruit through perseverance." —Luke 8:11, 15

Ground is valued by its fertility, that is, how productive and fruitful it is. Jesus tells us exactly how to bear fruit:

  1. "Hear the word in a spirit of openness" (Lk 8:15). To hear the word, we must eliminate any background noise. We must cultivate a spirit of openness. Just like a farmer turns over the ground by plowing it, so we turn our lives upside down — make any changes necessary — so the seed of God's word can sink deep into our hearts.
  2. "Retain it" (Lk 8:15). A gardener retains the seed in the soil by burying the seed with a covering of dirt. In this way, the wind can't blow it away, and birds can't eat it. Likewise, we hide the word in our hearts (Ps 119:11, KJV), treasuring it, and refusing to let it go. We meditate on it always (Ps 1:2), and make it part of our very being.
  3. "Bear fruit through perseverance" (Lk 8:15). We do not bear the fruit; God's word does that. However, we must persevere in cooperating with the Holy Spirit in dispensing His word (Mt 24:45), teaching it, and overcoming our tendencies to slack off from sharing His word.

Let's work hard to be rich ground for Jesus. "If we do not relax our efforts, in due time we shall reap our harvest" (Gal 6:9).

Prayer: Father, may I act in a manner appropriate for one who has heard the word of Almighty God today.
Promise: "To you the mysteries of the reign of God have been confided." —Lk 8:10
Praise: St. Pio brought many back to the faith by using his spiritual gifts of miracles and knowledge.

23 posted on 09/23/2006 9:36:39 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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