GROW: Just the other day some of my friends agreed on a new way to approach the new year: Select one word, a kind of mantra for 2023. Ironically, even though I am indecisive to a fault, I had no trouble deciding on mine: “Choose.” I often get stuck, whether it’s deciding which online clothing purchases to return, what to order on the menu … and don’t get me started on major life decisions. Today’s reading from Sirach reminds us of the choice that matters most: If we choose to keep the commandments, they will save us. “Before man are life and death, good and evil, whichever he chooses shall be given him.” We are well into 2023, but it bears reminding that each day we have an opportunity to choose anew: To follow God’s law, fulfilled in the words and example of Jesus. He will show us the way. “If you trust in God, you too shall live.”
GO: We’ve probably all heard the term “quiet quitting” by now. It’s a workplace phenomenon where employees do the bare minimum rather than going above and beyond. I thought of that phrase when reading Matthew’s Gospel today. How many of us Christians have “quietly quit,” doing the minimum required – going to Mass on Sunday, being faithful to our spouse, not resorting to violence when we get angry with someone. Jesus challenges us to go above and beyond the Ten Commandments. You shall not kill, but you should not stay angry either. You shall not commit adultery, but you shall also love your spouse with your whole heart. Today’s readings challenge us to rediscover God’s law and challenge ourselves to go “above and beyond” in our daily lives.
PRAY: Pray today’s psalm (119): “Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!” How might you specifically follow the law of the Lord just a little bit better, or above and beyond, today? Each day?
Written by The Faithful DiscipleBACK TO LIST