Humbly submit your will to God (thy Will be done) and consecrate yourself to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through Mary and Joseph,
Do not love the world or the things of the world.
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world,
sensual lust, enticement for the eyes, and a pretentious life,
is not from the Father but is from the world.
Yet the world and its enticement are passing away.
But whoever does the will of God remains forever. 1 JN 2:12-17
John is teaching us to put God first in our lives over worldly things. We have been blessed with so many things in the world, especially life. We need to be good stewards of the earth, it is a great gift from God. God has given us the earth and all material possessions. We are physical beings in need of material possessions to survive physically. We cannot forget the most important thing God gave us, our soul. It must be fed and nourished, too. Often times our physical world becomes more important because it is what we see, but the most important part of us is our soul which we cannot see. ”Blessed are those who believe and do not see.” JN 20:29 John reminds us that physical things will pass away, but our souls live forever!
There was a prophetess, Anna,
the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
She was advanced in years,
having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage,
and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.
She never left the temple,
but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer.
And coming forward at that very time,
she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child
to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem.
When they had fulfilled all the prescriptions
of the law of the Lord,
they returned to Galilee,
to their own town of Nazareth.
The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom;
and the favor of God was upon him. Lk 2:36-40
We learn of another person who dedicated their life to God, Anna, a prophetess. It is amazing the stories and lives of those surrounding the time the Word became Flesh. Anna prepared for the day the infant Jesus was to come into her life with prayer, fasting, and consistent worship in the Temple. Anna teaches us a way to Christ/holiness. She doesn’t lead a busy life or accomplish anything according to worldly standards (John teaches us this in the first reading). She practically lives in the Temple (go to a holy place). She fasted and prayed. She would have known the Scriptures well. She would grow in the virtues of patience and purity. The Holy Catholic Church has preserved these ways to holiness for over 2,000 years. Each one of us is called (Baptism) to prepare ourselves for the day Jesus is to come to us physically or spiritually(our death/Second Coming). What are you doing to prepare? I need a lot of work, too. Be a warrior for Christ! Never stop fighting!
Today’s challenge: Feed and nourish your soul with the Sacraments. Find a quiet deserted place to pray and fast. Friday is a required fast by the Catholic Church, not an option. Each fast reminds us to fight.
Be a servant, become a saint!