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Tuesday, March 24, 2020

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Ezekiel 47:1-9, 12
Psalm 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9
John 5:1-16

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rooted in the stream

"They shall be watered by the flow from the sanctuary." —Ezekiel 47:12

The fruit trees growing along the river in Ezekiel's vision represent us as disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ and as sons and daughters of the Church. We are to be disciples who offer the food of the Word of God and the medicine of the healing of God to a hurting world, which desperately needs the Good News of salvation and liberation in Jesus Christ.

The trees in Ezekiel's vision are life-giving and healing because they are watered "by the flow from the sanctuary," the Church (Ez 47:12). Without the gift of the Holy Spirit, the world in which we live is like a desert, "parched, lifeless and without water" (see Ps 63:2). It is from the flow of grace that we disciples minister. Apart from Jesus we can do nothing (Jn 15:5). In the grace of the Holy Spirit, all things are possible for us (see Mt 19:26).

The desert is the world in which we live. God's plan is to lead us to the restful waters of the Church (see Ps 23:2). There we find rest and food for our souls. If we try to operate apart from the river of grace, we'll soon be as dry and lifeless as the surrounding desert. Is ministry too hard for you? Do you think you need a break from the Church? Stay planted firmly beside the river. Keep your roots in the Church. The Holy Spirit will flow through you, keep you refreshed, and bring life to a hurting world.

Prayer:  Father, anchor me in the Church and never let me be parted from You.

Promise:  "God is our Refuge and our Strength, an ever-present Help in distress. Therefore, we fear not." —Ps 46:2-3

Praise:  John and Carol actively began planning their divorce. Then their son was arrested. Jesus used this situation to unite the couple in prayer for their son and restore their commitment to one another.

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

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 8, 2019

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