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Monday, May 26, 2008

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St. Philip Neri

1 Peter 1:3-9
Psalm 111
Mark 10:17-27

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"i do!" or "i do..."?

"Teacher, what must I do?" —Mark 10:17

The rich young man was what we call today a "can-do" individual. He was always doing something. First, he ran up to Jesus and knelt before Him. He then asked, "Good Teacher, what must I do to share in everlasting life?" Jesus, recognizing the man's mindset, accordingly gave him a list of things to do: the commandments. The young man's response was another action-oriented one: " 'I have kept all these.' Check those off of my to-do list" (Mk 10:20). Jesus continued to meet the man right where he was, saying, "There is one thing more you must do" (Mk 10:21). Jesus gave him exactly the answer he wanted — something he could do to prepare his soul to accept Jesus and receive eternal life — but the man "went away sad" (Mk 10:22).

If we base our relationship with Jesus on what we do, then so will Jesus. Remember, Jesus Himself said: "The measure with which you measure will be used to measure you" (Mt 7:2). There will always be one thing more we must do, and "for man it is impossible" (Mk 10:27). When we give our lives to Jesus in loving service, we in effect marry Him. We say, "I do," as would a bride and groom. Now, our value comes from being in Christ, and we focus on loving and serving Him rather than on impressing Him. He continues to meet us where we are — only now we are in Him, and all is brought to perfection in Him.

You'll eventually be saying "I do" to Jesus. Which meaning will you choose — marriage or merit?

Prayer:  Jesus, Lord, Savior, God, I DO!

Promise:  "Praised be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, He Who in His great mercy gave us new birth; a birth unto hope which draws its life from the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead." —1 Pt 1:3

Praise:  St. Philip was so hospitable to the youth of Rome that his room was known as "the home of Christian mirth."

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

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 23, 2007

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