October 19, 2008
Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Matthew 22: 15-21
Then the Pharisees went and plotted to entrap him in what he said. So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, "Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and teach the way of God in accordance with truth, and show deference to no one; for you do not regard people with partiality. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?" But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, "Why are you putting me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin used for the tax." And they brought him a denarius. Then he said to them, "Whose head is this, and whose title?" They answered, "The emperor's." Then he said to them, "Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor's, and to God the things that are God's."
Introductory Prayer: God, knowing that you are my Creator and that I am yours, I give myself to you. Lord, may I never sell myself to this world, for you have already purchased me.
Petition: Lord, grant that I may surrender myself to you completely, so that your will may be my desire.
1. Surrender Your All
When we give God our whole selves completely, we are then in a position to receive God completely. Once we recognize that we are nothing without our Creator, we are more able to submit ourselves to the will of the Creator. We often submit to the world’s demands on our principles, on our use of time, on our priorities. But these are all God’s.
2. Reconcile Oneself
Reconciliation does not just mean attending confession with a priest regularly, although certainly there is no deep reconciliation with God without the sacrament. Reconciliation also means having knowledge of oneself, recognizing the truth about how one should be and fixing those aspects that are not in accordance with that truth. Reconciliation requires each of us to sit in quiet and pray, to examine and reflect. Only then can we know where we need to change. We must then renounce our own wills and bring ourselves to the foot of the Cross.
3. Content with Oneself
Redemption at the Cross brings contentment. It is at the foot of the Cross that we find hope and faithfulness; it is there our eyes will be opened to see our true selves. Acts of contrition and simplicity are sure ways to perfect a Christ-like manner in us. This requires a true devotion to the Lord as well as a deep acceptance that we are not alone and that we cannot do it alone.
Conversation with Christ: Lord, God of all, God of everything, my God, help me to surrender myself, to simplify myself, to bring myself to the foot of your cross. Let Mary be my example of simplicity, silence and true renunciation. Help me to know who you created me to be and to accept your will for me. I want to be content with your plans, knowing that prayer, fasting, simplicity, examination, acts of charity, and the sacrament of reconciliation will gain for me eternal life.
Resolution: I know that I belong to God and that I must give to God what belongs to God. Therefore, I resolve to surrender my entire being, knowing that winning Christ means that I win all things.
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