September 23 - One Bread, One Body
September 23, Twenty Fifth Sunday Ordinary Time
Cycle B Readings:
1) Wisdom 2:12, 17-20
2) James 3:16-4:3
Gospel) Mark 9:30-37
Pleasure Seeking or Treasure Seeking
"You ask and you do not receive because you ask wrongly, with a view to squandering what you received on your pleasures." — James 4:3
Human history provides ample testimony about the effects of pleasure seeking. One pleasure is never enough. People always want the next pleasure, followed by another. Companies thrive by stoking the pleasure-seeking desires of masses of consumers. Left to our own desires, we become slaves of pleasure-seeking, servants of the cravings of our own flesh (see Rm 6:12).
I challenge you to spend the next ten seconds looking at a crucifix. As you gaze on Jesus' crucified body, ask yourself these questions: "What if Jesus chose to pursue earthly pleasure as often as I do? What if He chose not to suffer and die for me?"
Then ask Jesus to break the chains of your fleshly desires. "Already you have devoted enough time" on your pleasures (1 Pt 4:3). Now devote the rest of your time on earth to seeking God's pleasure. Through the cross, be crucified to the world (Gal 6:14). When you are crucified to your own desires, you are then empty enough to receive God's desires. Then you are ready to receive God's abundant life, joy, peace, love, and the gifts of the Spirit. Repent of following your desires. Seek the lasting pleasures of God rather than the momentary pleasures of this world.
Prayer: Father, send me the Holy Spirit to fight against my flesh (Gal 5:17). Cleanse my heart (Jn 2:15) of useless desires.
Promise: "Let us condemn him to a shameful death; for according to His own words, God will take care of him." —Wis 2:20
Praise: Praise Jesus, risen Lord and Intercessor, Who is "always able to save those who approach God through Him" (Heb 7:25).
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Imprimatur ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from August 1, 2018 through September 30, 2018.
†Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 15, 2017.
The Imprimatur ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Imprimatur agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.