For you this week:
- Reflection for Saturday: The real sin of Adam may surprise you
- Inside the Ministry: Journey on the Trail of Roses
- This week’s WordBytes faith-builder: The Passion to Evangelize Boldly
- Footsteps to Heaven podcast: 2 Secrets to Praying When You Don’t Feel Like Praying
This week’s Trivia Challenge: What was the name of the forbidden tree Adam and Eve ate from? (Check your answer at the end of this newsletter.)
Saturday February 11, 2023
Psalm 90:2-6, 12-13
God called to Adam and asked him, “Where are you?” He answered, “I heard you in the garden, but I was afraid, because I was naked, so I hid myself.” (From Saturday’s first reading)
Reflection for Saturday:
The real sin of Adam may surprise you
Do you know what the first sin of our first human father was? Disobedience, yes. He ate from the tree that God had forbidden. But it’s a much larger problem than that. We know that our first mother succumbed to temptation because she listened to the seductive tricks of the serpent and she allowed herself to be fooled by him. But what was Adam’s temptation?
Our first father — like many fathers since — failed to serve his family as their protector against evil. Adam represents the man who has been given the truth but does not protect his soulmate (and by extension, their children) from the lies of the Devil. Where was Adam when Eve saw the serpent? And listened to the serpent? He was with her (see Genesis 3:6). Silently watching. Silently cooperating with the lie because he did not speak up. Silently agreeing to the sin when he accepted the evil fruit that Eve gave to him.
What then do you suppose was Adam’s image of God? A Father who is silent when temptation strikes? No; remember that Adam hid from God after the sin. He thought that he actually could hide! He is the father who teaches by his own behaviors that we can do whatever we please because the Father doesn’t see us; God is not always with us.
Do you know any fathers who teach the same thing by their silence about or cooperation with sin? They’re unwittingly used by Satan to spread false images about God, about sin, and about the consequences of disobedience.
God’s Fatherhood is widely disrespected in our world. Our society is full of adults who are still seeking the father they needed during childhood while at the same time hiding from God, the only Perfect Father. They miss out on his love by deciding for themselves what is right and what is wrong, allowing Satan to usurp God’s authority over their lives.
Have you ever wondered how God feels about the lost souls in your family? You pray for them because you yearn for their salvation. You even ache for them, knowing that their sinful lifestyles are separating them from the God who loves them and they are endangering their eternal souls.
Abba-Father’s yearning desire to embrace his lost loved ones is being manifested through you. The ache you feel for those who are rejecting him is a tiny portion of Abba’s ache. When you grieve for them, you are tasting the salt of Abba’s tears.
God is counting on you to work with him in bringing lost souls to his outstretched arms. You might not be able to do it with your own family members, but you can succeed with someone else’s family members.
The first step is to know God as your Father better than you do now so that you can reveal his loving Fatherhood to the people he puts in your path. That’s what my book 30 Days to the Father’s Heart will accomplish for you. (This article was excerpted from this book.)
Inside the Ministry:
Journey on the Trail of Roses
What are you doing for Lent this year? Take a journey with Jesus on THE TRAIL OF ROSES! February 22 through April 8 we’ll post ideas for connecting with Jesus each day except Sundays (did you know that Sundays in Lent are still celebrations of the Resurrection of Jesus?).
The gift Jesus gave you when he suffered and died on Good Friday was his very Self, his entire Self. This Lent, give him a gift of yourself — a different “rose” on each of the 40 days of Lent. Good News Ministries will send you a short daily meditation that contains a suggested gift that you can give to him, and a message from Jesus about it, and a prayer. Each one is a super easy but super incredible experience with Jesus.
Sign up today for this very special Lenten exercise that’s quick and easy, yet heart-changing!
Receive by email @ elists.gogoodnews.net/dada/mail.cgi/list/lent.
Receive by text message on the Telegram app @ t.me/joinchat/U9SBjMex74UZm-Ud.
Or download the free PDF e-book version @ gnm.org/terry-modica-author/trail-of-roses.
This week’s recommended faith-builder:
The Passion to Evangelize Boldly
Consider Saint Paul’s influence on business and community affairs. Although he was a powerful preacher of the truth, his words were backed up by the holiness of the Spirit of Truth that lived within him.
If we are extraordinary homilists or religious education teachers or daily reflection writers, but we are not preaching the same message with our daily, person-to-person behavior, the gift of preaching is being used scandalously. It’s a terrible, far-reaching sin. It would be better to lose our voice than for souls to be wounded or lost on our account.
Notice how Saint Paul did it….
For more on this, visit wordbytes.org/evangelization-ministry/passion-of-st-paul.
WordBytes is a library of Catholic faith-building articles by Good News Ministries. Come on in and explore! Visit WordBytes.org today.
2 Secrets to Praying When You Don’t Feel Like Praying
How is your prayer life through the difficult times? Have you found that it’s less than it used to be? Maybe you’ve even said, “God’s not answering my prayers, so I might as well quit praying.” If you’ve reached the point where you feel like you can’t pray anymore, this message is for you.
If you feel like you can’t pray anymore because it doesn’t make a difference – you’re tired, you’re drained, you’re exhausted from putting in so much prayer effort, and so much effort into emotionally dealing with all the trials that are going on today in your life and in the world — if you find yourself in that situation: Just surrender. You don’t need words.
That’s the first of two secrets to praying when you don’t feel like praying, which I explain how to do based on my own personal experiences.
Listen to this podcast @ https://gnm.org/footsteps98.
Or watch the video @ gnm-media.org/2-secrets-to-praying-when-you-dont-feel-like-praying/. Or if you prefer to read it, download the transcript at this link.
Sign up for early access to podcasts. New episodes of the podcast show Footsteps to Heaven are published before this newsletter goes out. You can be notified as soon as new ones are published! Subscribe at gnm-media.org for the podcast videos or at footstepstoheaven.com for the audio-only version.
Answer to this week’s Trivia Challenge:
What was the name of the forbidden tree Adam and Eve ate from? The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. FUN FACT: The idea that its fruit was an apple is likely a mashup of the Latin word for evil, mali, found in Genesis 2:17 (“rah” in the original Hebrew) and a fruit called mala (in Proverbs 25:11) or malum (Song of Solomon 2:3), which in Hebrew was tappuwach. This Palestine fruit is really the quince; the climate was too hot for apples.
God bless you!
Every morning, I lift up in prayer everyone who helps Good News Ministries in any way (donors, volunteers, prayer supporters, etc.) and all the prayer requests posted on our site. What can I cover in prayer for you? Post your prayer request.
How else can the team and I serve you today? Visit our homepage.
Let’s connect in GNM’s own SmartCatholics community, called Good News Faith Builders. I’m available to interact with you there.
Thank you for reading this newsletter.
Your servant in Christ,
Terry Modica, Executive Director
Good News Ministries
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