Gift: Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.
Reading: “When an unclean spirit goes out of someone, it roams through arid regions searching for rest but, finding none, it says, ‘I shall return to my home from which I came.’ But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there, and the last condition of that man is worse than the first.” (Luke 11: 24-26)
Observation: I am glad that I was reading in the Gospel of Matthew this morning, because I would have had the same reaction to these verses from the Gospel of Luke that I normally do. I usually say to myself how horrible it is that I could be rid of an evil spirit to only have it return with even more terrible evil spirits to torment me. I am usually left with a defeated attitude after reading these verses, because I know that I struggle with my own demons from my past and I can’t imagine them bringing back other demons to torment me. However, in the Gospel of Matthew this morning, the explanation was given that the return of the unclean spirit was directed at Israel originally and not me, and it is the evil generation that condemns Jesus that he was speaking to. Still, I know that I must keep vigilant against evil by continuing to accept Jesus into my life daily with both prayer and fasting and doing the will of the Father. I want Jesus to see me as his brother and not the one that did not accept him as the Savior.
Personification: Kindness – The strength of Christ’s love which leads us to a greater service. I don’t focus on displaying the fruit of kindness enough. If I could remember to display kindness, it would definitely lead me to greater service of the Lord. Of course, it is in this service that I hope to encounter the grace that will save me from myself.
Prayer: Lord, help me to be ever mindful of my capacity to sin, and rely on your grace to save me from all evil. I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit. Amen.