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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

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Hebrews 2:14-18
Psalm 105:1-4, 6-9
Mark 1:29-39

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good day or god's day?

"Rising early the next morning, He went off to a lonely place in the desert; there He was absorbed in prayer." —Mark 1:35

Jesus was tempted to do the right thing at the wrong time in the wrong place. An entire town wanted Jesus to stay put and perform more healings (Mk 1:36-37). He overcame this temptation, refused to stay where He was popular, did His Father's will, and moved on to proclaim the good news (Mk 1:37-38). How many of us fall for the temptation to do good things but not God's thing? Often we are tempted at nine in the morning to do something good that will divert us all day from doing God's will.

Jesus was prepared to overcome this temptation because He had risen early before everyone else to go off to a lonely place in the desert to pray (Mk 1:35). We too will start off the day right if we report for duty and worship first thing in the morning. Then we are on the way to a better-than-good day, to God's day — a day in His perfect will.

It all starts with early morning prayer. "The favors of the Lord are not exhausted, His mercies are not spent; they are renewed each morning" (Lam 3:22). "Morning after morning He opens my ear that I may hear; and I have not rebelled, have not turned back" (Is 50:4-5). Jesus is "the Dayspring," the Dawn, Who "shall visit us in His mercy" (Lk 1:78). Offer the first fruits and the first moments of every day to Him.

Prayer:  Father, may I be constantly in prayer and in Your will.

Promise:  "Jesus likewise had a full share in ours, that by His death He might rob the devil, the prince of death, of his power, and free those who through fear of death had been slaves their whole life long." —Heb 2:14-15

Praise:  Martha's crippling arthritis could have led her to bitterness. Instead, she chose to surrender her will to Jesus and learned to depend totally on the Lord for endurance and strength.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 27, 2012

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