died to self? (see jn 12:24)
Jesus said, "To what shall I compare this generation? It is like children who sit in marketplaces." —Matthew 11:16
As a result of the first sin, all human beings are wounded, fallen, and alienated from God. The problem with the world is our very selves. Therefore, Jesus took on Himself the condition of our selves. Then, by dying on the cross, He gave us the opportunity to be a new creation (see Gal 6:15), to be born again (see Jn 3:3, 5), and to have a new nature (2 Pt 1:4). By being baptized, we receive the new nature. By denying our very selves and being Jesus' disciples (Lk 9:23), we live our Baptisms.
If, however, we choose to be selfish, we let our old selves return to power and enslave us. Thus, we must resist the temptations to selfishness. The world does not revolve around us. We should not be the center of attention. We should not expect others to jump, dance, cry, or laugh when we want them to (see Mt 11:17). We must repent of our selfish attempts to control others. If we deny our selves by obeying His commands (see Is 48:18), we will truly love ourselves and not be addicted to our selves (see Lk 10:27). When we lose our old selves, we will save our true selves (Lk 9:24).
This Christmas, more than ever, live no longer for your self but for Jesus (see 2 Cor 5:15).
Prayer: Father, by the Holy Spirit may I crucify my old self "with its passions and desires" (Gal 5:24).
Promise: "Your descendants would be like the sand, and those born of your stock like its grains, their name never cut off or blotted out from My presence." —Is 48:19
Praise: St. Lucy, virgin and martyr, truly died to herself. She kept her faith amid torture and persecution, and remained faithful to the end (Mt 24:13).
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our leaflet on Accepting Jesus as Lord, Savior, and God or on audio AV 43-1 or video V-43.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend David L. Zink, June 12, 2002
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 13, 2002