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Tuesday, January 28, 1997

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St. Thomas Aquinas

Hebrews 10:1-10
Psalm 40
Mark 3:31-35

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the living will

"By this 'will,' we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." —Hebrews 10:10

One of the greatest wishes of many people is to be mentioned in the will of a rich relative. How great it would be if Uncle Ralph dies and leaves us a million dollars in his will. Hallelujah! We're in the will! Of course, being in the will is no help if Uncle Ralph lives to be 110. The will has no effect if Uncle Ralph doesn't die (see Heb 9:17).

This is part of the context for today's Eucharistic readings. Oh, to be in the will of God! Then we could inherit life everlasting, eternal happiness, and even become "brother and sister and mother" to God (Mk 3:35). There's only one hitch: God has to die first.

God the Father prepared a body for God the Son (Heb 10:5). Out of love for us, Jesus took on human flesh and became the "Executor" of the estate, carrying out the will of God by dying. Now the will can take effect. Hallelujah! We're in the will!

However, there is a provision in the will. We ourselves must also die for God's will to take effect. We must die to our own will and do God's will. Just as the death of Jesus brings us into God's will, so our dying to self can help bring others into God's will. Imitate Jesus. Die to self so others can shout: "Hallelujah! We're in the will!"

Prayer:  Father, to do Your will is my delight (Ps 40:9). "Not my will, but Yours be done" (Lk 22:42).

Promise:  "Ears open to obedience You gave me." —Ps 40:7

Praise:  Thomas, perhaps the wisest and most prolific teacher in Church history, was praying before a crucifix near the end of his life. A voice asked Thomas what he wanted as the reward for all of his service to God. Thomas answered: "None but Yourself, O Lord."

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by one of our editors.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, June 20, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 26, 1996