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Monday, July 8, 2013

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Genesis 28:10-22
Psalm 91:1-4, 14-15
Matthew 9:18-26

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the intimacy of the sacraments

" 'If only I can touch His cloak,' she thought, 'I shall get well.' " —Matthew 9:21

The Lord draws us by "human cords" (Hos 11:4). He lets us touch Him as did the hemorrhaging woman (see Mt 9:20). Although Jesus' body has ascended to heaven, the Lord still takes us by the hand, as He took the hand of Jairus' daughter, to raise us from the dead (Mt 9:25). We stay "in touch" with Jesus, and His Incarnation is extended to us now especially through the Church and the sacraments.

Some people may think that touching, hearing, and seeing Jesus sacramentally is not as good as touching Him physically. In fact, it is much better. The hemorrhaging woman was blessed with a healing, but had nothing like the amazing privilege we have of receiving the Body, Blood, soul, and divinity of Jesus into us. The girl raised from the dead received a great miracle, but eventually died. However, we who live today can be raised from the dead forever by letting Jesus give us a new nature in the sacrament of Baptism.

By becoming members of the Church, we not only touch Jesus but also become parts of His Body in a very real way. Through the Holy Spirit working through the Church and the sacraments, we live in Christ and He in us (see Jn 6:56). Celebrate the sacraments. Live in touch with His love (Jn 15:9).

Prayer:  Father, may I have such a deep, personal relationship with You through my sacramental relationship with Jesus that I will do anything for You, even be martyred.

Promise:  "Of everything You give me, I will faithfully return a tenth part to You." —Gn 28:22

Praise:  The deep desire to receive Jesus daily in the Eucharist was the motive behind homeschooling in the Smith family.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on Developing a Deep Personal Relationship with Jesus on audio AV 52-1 or video V-52.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 18, 2013

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