Sunday January 29, 2023

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica


“Everything that God blesses is made holy!”


Good News Reflection for:

4th Sunday in Ordinary Time
January 29, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Your Word, Lord, gives me hope, calms my anxiety and gives me new strength to walk in Your truth. Amen.

SaintsToday’s Saint Quote & Prayer:
gnm.org/SaintQuotes/

Today’s Readings:

Zephaniah 2:3; 3:12-13
Psalm 146:6-10 (with Matthew 5:3)
1 Corinthians 1:26-31
Matthew 5:1-12a
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/012923.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/2023-01-29-usccb-daily-mass-readings

Finding our sainthood in the Beatitudes

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

In this Sunday’s Gospel reading, we get a glimpse of our own sainthood. The eight Beatitudes in Matthew 5:1-12 describe the holiness of those who imitate Jesus. The first four deal with our relationship with God; the last four deal with our relationships with others.

How can we call ourselves saints? Remember that you are a saint, as imperfect as you are at this time on your journey, because God has sanctified you through your baptism, thanks to what Jesus did for you on the cross. This means that he has blessed you. And blessed are you because you love as Jesus loves.

Everything that God blesses is made holy! Therefore, any person who lives the lifestyle of the Beatitudes (which is the lifestyle of Jesus) is blessed by God and can rightfully be called a saint: the poor in spirit who recognize that they need God’s love, those who mourn and turn to the Holy Spirit for comfort, those who meekly (i.e., without arrogance) stand up for what is right because they love God, and so on down the list of Beatitudes. Meditate on each blessing and notice your sainthood and the challenge to become more saintly by improving how well you imitate Jesus.

The Church canonizes Saints (which we signify with a capital “S”) so that we have role models. Even though we’ve not reached their level of holiness, we belong to the same communion of saints. A saint is anyone who is following Christ toward heaven, with or without a lay-over in purgatory. As we strive to improve, we can ask the Saints for help and receive their spiritual guidance.

Questions for Personal Reflection:
Looking over the list of the Beatitudes, which do you implement best? Which do you need to improve? Which one do you find least desirable? Why? Discuss this with a Christian friend, priest, counselor or spiritual director to figure out how this weakness is really based on a misunderstanding of God’s love for you. Then you will be set free to grow in this area of holiness!

Questions for Community Faith Sharing:
How do you avail yourself of help from the Saints? How does this help you grow in holiness? Give an example.

Note: This Gospel reading is from the Sermon on the Mount. For a full Bible study on this, go to https://wordbytes.org/bible-study/holy-living-1.

© 2023 by Terry A. Modica

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