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Tuesday, May 6, 2003

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Acts 7:51—8:1
Psalm 31
John 6:30-35

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" 'So that we can put faith in You,' they asked Him, 'What sign are You going to perform for us to see? What is the "work" You do?' " —John 6:30

Jesus was asked: "What is the 'work' You do?" (Jn 6:30) Jesus responded not by saying what He did but Who He was. Jesus said: "I Myself am the Bread of Life" (Jn 6:35). Life in Christ is not primarily what we do, but who we are in Jesus.

Stephen was a very successful worker. He took over an administrative position fraught with difficulties and successfully dealt with the problem (see Acts 6:1ff). He was even more gifted in preaching and evangelizing. Yet Stephen was not primarily concerned with continuing his good work. His priority was being a disciple of the Lord, even if that meant his work on earth had to end as Stephen became the first Christian martyr.

When we emphasize who we are more than what we do, we do not make our work less important, but more important. Work that expresses who we are in Christ is the most important work in the world. When we focus on being God's children, we are God's workers in an awesome sense.

In this Easter season, may our work rise from the dead of pride, selfishness, and greed. May we work because of who we are in the risen Christ.

Prayer:  Father, teach me to be what You want me to be. May my doing always come from my being in You.

Promise:  "He fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, 'Lord, do not hold this sin against them.' " —Acts 7:60

Praise:  Although tempted at times to do otherwise, Juanita stays focused on her identity of wife and mother and disciple of Christ.

Reference:  (Presentation Ministries' annual Forty Hours and Family Camp will take place at the Paul Jansen Discipleship Center and Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel May 15-17, 2003. For information or to register, e-mail retreats@presentationministries.com or call 937-587-5464.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Giles H. Pater, October 17, 2002

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 21, 2002