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Friday, December 7, 2001

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St. Ambrose

Isaiah 29:17-24
Psalm 27
Matthew 9:27-31

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the damage of disobedience

"Jesus warned them sternly...But they went off." —Matthew 9:30-31

Jesus warned sternly the two blind men He had healed: " 'See to it that no one knows of this.' But they went off and spread word of Him through the whole area" (Mt 9:30-31). The disobedience of the two healed men resulted in some people continuing to have the wrong idea about the Messiah. This contributed to the rejection of Jesus' claim to be the Messiah and eventually to His crucifixion and death. Disobedience is harmful, even to causing Jesus' death on the cross.

Beginning this Advent, let us obey the Lord always and in detail. Let us delight to obey the Lord (see Ps 40:9). The Lord has a wondrous Christmas season planned for us, for He intends to come to us in a special way. However, we must follow His directions. The Lord's plan for the coming year and for our lives is amazingly glorious. Yet only by our obedience will we live His plan for us. The Lord died on the cross and rose from the dead to make possible for us lives which are graced beyond anything we can ask for or imagine (see Eph 3:20). However, we must obey Him. All evils have entered the world through disobedience. But grace floods the world through the obedience of Jesus and our imitation of His obedience. Obey Him.

Prayer:  Father, grace me to obey You and thereby to receive the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:32).

Promise:  "Out of gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see. The lowly will ever find joy in the Lord, and the poor rejoice in the Holy One of Israel." —Is 29:18-19

Praise:  St. Ambrose wrote: "The Church possesses the safest harbor of salvation for all in distress."

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on Obeying God on video V-62 or audio AV 62-3.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, May 30, 2001

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 4, 2001