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Thursday, October 14, 2004

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Pope St. Callistus I

Ephesians 1:3-10
Psalm 98
Luke 11:47-54

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blessings and praise

"Praised be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who has bestowed on us in Christ every spiritual blessing in the heavens!  God chose us in Him before the world began, to be holy and blameless in His sight." —Ephesians 1:3-4

Holy and blameless – this is how God sees us in Christ. A great blessing of being in Christ is that not only can we approach God, but He dwells within us! (Jn 6:56; 17:23) Another great spiritual blessing is that the Holy Spirit is the first Installment of our inheritance with God (Eph 1:14). In addition to these blessings, God has bestowed on us "every spiritual blessing" (Eph 1:3).

How can we respond to God for these blessings? Praise is the response, because blessing and praise go together (Rv 5:12, 13; 7:12). Praise God with everything you've got — sing and praise with greater enthusiasm than you have at your favorite sporting event. God is in the spotlight of your praise, receiving everything that you have to give. "Sing joyfully to the Lord…break into song; sing praise…sing joyfully before the King, the Lord"  (Ps 98:4-6).

There are various ways to praise and worship God:

  • in joyous singing (Ps 95:1-2),
  • by lifting our hands to Him (Ps 63:5),
  • by giving to others (Lk 6:38) and to God (Mal 3:10) beyond measure,
  • in telling others about God's kindness (Ps 63:4),
  • in quiet meditation (Ps 119:97), and
  • on our knees (Ps 95:6).

God gives us every blessing. Give Him every praise!

Prayer:  Father, give me the grace and the desire to praise You like I never have before.

Promise:  "It is in Christ and through His blood that we have been redeemed and our sins forgiven." —Eph 1:7

Praise:  Pope St. Callistus, one of the early pope-martyrs, praised God by living a life of extraordinary forgiveness.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, March 30, 2004

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 1, 2004