Wednesday February 8, 2023

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

“To make spiritual progress, we must understand and obey the spirit of the law.”

Good News Reflection for:

Wednesday of the 5th week in Ordinary Time
February 8, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Lord, please give me a strong conscience to discover the evil that springs from my heart. Thank You for forgiving me and washing away my sins. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:

Today’s Readings:

Genesis 2:4b-9, 15-17
Ps 104:1-2a, 27-30
Mark 7:14-23
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:

Moving forward on the journey of sainthood

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

Too often, we readily take short-cuts to holiness. That’s what the people were doing in today’s Gospel story when Jesus challenged them to think more deeply. Religious laws told them what not to eat, and they thought that simple obedience was enough.

Obeying the letter of the law doesn’t get us anywhere, not really. To make spiritual progress, we must understand and obey the spirit of the law.

To dig past the words and find the spirit of the law, we need a personal relationship with the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit is not some esoteric, intangible force, but a friend, a guide, a teacher, a comforter, and an encourager on the journey of holy living.

It’s Christ’s Holy Spirit who helps us figure out what to do with the natural inclinations within us that tempt us to give in to the evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, and folly that Jesus said is what defiles us.

We are all called to be saints. Right here, right now, in our daily experiences. A saint is anyone who wants to spend eternity with Christ in heaven. You are a holy saint if you want to imitate Christ a little better today than you succeeded in doing yesterday. Because of this, you work at purifying your heart so that what comes out of you is the goodness of God.

A canonized saint is a holy saint, living in heaven, whom the Church officially proclaims as a role model for the rest of us. They are not canonized just so we can seek their help when we need extra prayer support. They are given to us as spiritual supports who will teach us how to live like Christ.

What’s holding you back from your sainthood today? To grow in holiness, we must first identify what is impure within us and seek God’s supernatural help in overcoming it through the special grace provided in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and at Mass. Then, we have to consciously work at resisting new infections that make the heart impure.

The way of Christ is not easy. The moment we feel content with how much we’ve already improved, that is when we start slipping backwards, because such contentment is arrogance. However, it is good to appreciate how much the Lord has helped us improve. This gives glory to God and moves us forward even while we sit still and rest for awhile.

What are you doing today that’s moving you forward on the journey of ever-increasing holiness?

Here are some of what we offer at Good News Ministries: visit the Saints Resource Site (a comprehensive list of Saints’ names, their meanings, their Feast Days, and information about their lives) or pray with the saints (from my book Daily Prayers with the Saints)  All of these can be accessed here:

© 2023 by Terry A. Modica

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