Suffer quietly, but not in vain…and know that you are not alone!

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"Cloud of witnesses"

Gift:  Piety (Reverence) – With the gift of reverence, sometimes called piety, we have a deep sense of respect for God and the Church. A person with reverence recognizes our total reliance on God and comes before God with humility, trust, and love.

Reading:  1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us 2 and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith.  In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood.  (Hebrews 12:1-2,4)

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9 She said, “If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured.” Immediately her flow of blood dried up. She felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction.  He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be cured of your affliction.”  (Mark 28-29,34)

Observation:  It is my understanding that the author of Hebrews was trying to encourage his audience with the words that we read in the first reading, and it certainly had that effect on this reader this morning.  I realize that no matter how difficult the struggle is with my sinfulness and pain, it is not even close to the point of shedding blood for my faith, so I can certainly persevere through it as long as I keep my eyes fixed on Jesus.  In the gospel reading for today’s Mass, there are two miracles performed by the power of God.  One is passive and the other is by the active will of God directed from his Son.  I focused on the passive today, because it reveals to me that I need only seek out the power of God and it shall come to me according to his will, even if I do not have an active representative of Christ praying for his will to be done in my life.  If, however, I were at the point of death, I would hope that I could count on the active participation of his disciples to bring me back to life, as I would hope that I am available to pray for someone in need as well.

Personification:  Faithfulness  I am choosing to focus on faithfulness today because I feel like it is only with the fruit of faithfulness displayed in my life that I can keep myself away from sin.  Of course, it is by the power and grace that comes from God and not any superhuman strength that I have on my own, but I also know that the power to persevere is but a prayer away at any point that I may be struggling with my human nature.

Prayer:  Lord, send down your holy Spirit to cover me and keep me away from all temptation today and for the rest of my life.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

 

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