"Children, it is the final hour." —1 John 2:18
On this last day of the year, you may look back on 2008 and see that many antichrists have appeared (1 Jn 2:18). It may have been a very difficult year. However, tough years need not be bad years. Even the most "impossible" year can be good. Even the most sinful year can be turned to the good by repentance, forgiveness, and total commitment to Jesus. "All's well that ends well." End this year by accepting God's grace.
Even if you have endured such a year as Job had, you have so much to be thankful for. No suffering or tragedy should overshadow the "love following upon love" (Jn 1:16) that God pours out over you. "Of His fullness we have all had a share" (Jn 1:16). The Lord has again "crowned the year" with His bounty (Ps 65:12). "Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. It is right to give Him thanks and praise" (introduction to the Preface at Mass).
"Give thanks to God the Father always and for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Eph 5:20). "Dedicate yourselves to thankfulness" (Col 3:15). "Let the last word be, He is all in all! Let us praise Him the more, since we cannot fathom Him, for greater is He than all His works" (Sir 43:28-29).
Thank You, Jesus, for 2008. I love You with all my heart.
Prayer: Father, may I realize that You don't owe me anything and I owe You everything, even every moment of my life.
Promise: "In the beginning was the Word; the Word was in God's presence, and the Word was God." —Jn 1:1
Praise: Pope St. Sylvester was thirty-third of the first thirty-five canonized popes, when being chosen pope was tantamount to a death sentence. He was blessed by God to lead the Church from her years of persecution to be set "free in the open" (Ps 18:20) by his construction of some of the first churches.
Reference: (Resolve to work for the Lord and for Presentation Ministries this New Year! Consider becoming a co-worker. Attend the "Co-Workers" Retreat Jan 31, 2009 in Cincinnati. Call 513-662-5378 for information.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 17, 2008
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