Tuesday August 29, 2023

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

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“When we die to our desire to change those who’ve hurt us, we can get on with life and enjoy it.”


Good News Reflection for:

Memorial of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist
August 29, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Give me the grace, Lord, to be brave and bold when You lead me to give testimony to Your Word. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:
gnm.org/SaintQuotes/

Today’s Readings:

1 Thessalonians 2:1-8
Ps 139: 1-3, 4-6
Mark 6: 17-29
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/082923.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/daily-mass-reading-podcast-august-29-2023

Getting nailed for the truth

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

Do you know the surest sign that you’re growing in holiness? You’re being attacked because of it! You’re living in a way that makes others realize that they too need to change, and this has unpleasant repercussions. Try not to take it personally. Those who cut you down are those who don’t want to change. In truth, it’s not you they want to destroy, but the invitation to holiness that your life exemplifies.

Such was Herod’s condition when he arrested John the Baptist. Herodias felt even guiltier than Herod did about their sin, as evidenced in today’s Gospel reading. She harbored such a strong grudge against John that she wanted him dead and she found the means to do it. But did it silence him forever? No, I’m sure the truth he had spoken nagged at her brain long afterward.

The truth does that when people fight it. Their battle keeps it right there in front of them and makes them do crazy things until they surrender. I suspect that hell is hearing the truth so loudly and clearly that it tortures forever those who don’t want to hear it.

Has your freedom to express your faith been blocked by those who don’t want to accept the truth? As they try to lock up that truth behind a wall of resistance, it’s driving them crazy. You’ve been nailed to the cross of their prejudices or fears or woundedness (or whatever else has trapped them in their sinful or unhealthy patterns), and the nails are hurting you. The nails are immobilizing you so that you can do nothing to improve the situation.

However, those who put you on the cross will never escape their guilt until they turn to the Lord with a heart that’s willing to change.

In the meantime, is there anything you can do? Or must you continue to hang on the cross?

What did Jesus do? He was nailed by those who did not want to accept the truths that he taught, but they could not silence his ability to make a difference. He asked the Father to forgive them — “for they don’t know what they’re doing.” He interceded for them. And then his pain ended. Soon afterward, he was raised into victory by a Father who was very pleased with him.

This is what happens to us, also, if we realize that our cross is actually the cross of Christ and that it’s accomplishing a redemptive goodness. When we give to the Father those who’ve nailed us, interceding for them, we set ourselves free to enjoy our own personal resurrection. Their attacks cannot stop the Father from being very happy with us.

When we die to our desire to change those who’ve hurt us, leaving their fate up to God, we can get on with life and enjoy it.

God will not allow their sins against you to go unchallenged. He will deal with them in whatever way is best for their eternal souls, according to his infinite wisdom, in the time-frame that they give him. And he will work with whatever they give him, so that eventually the truth sinks into them with the most profound effectiveness.

To help you reflect further on this, use our Faith Booster: “My peace I give you” @ https://wordbytes.org/faith-booster-minis/peace-be-with-you/

© 2023 by Terry A. Modica


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