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Tuesday, August 19, 2003

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St. John Eudes

Judges 6:11-24
Psalm 85
Matthew 19:23-30

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from defeated victim to world champion

"The Lord turned to him and said, 'Go with the strength you have and save Israel from the power of Midian. It is I Who send you.' " —Judges 6:14

The Israelites were a defeated people. For years, the Midianites annually ruined the Israelites' crops and the Israelites were powerless to do anything about it (Jgs 6:5-6). They were reduced to struggling for survival by doing such things as secretly beating out wheat in the wine press (see Jgs 6:11).

The church in the Western world is largely defeated. For years, our secular humanistic culture has repeatedly stolen the faith of our children, priestly and religious vocations, our desire to grow in holiness, the peace of our homes, and the strength and stability of our families. We seem powerless to do anything about it. We are reduced to being survivors, to mere "damage control."

The Lord sent an angel to Gideon not to tell him what he was but to tell him what he could be. The angel called Gideon "champion." With us also, the Lord is calling us to rise above our sinful mediocrity and to be His champions. Are you ready to leave behind defeat and sin and live the abundant life the Lord has promised? (see Jn 10:10)

Prayer:  Father, by the power of the Holy Spirit make our customary defeats intolerable to me.

Promise:  "For man it is impossible, but for God all things are possible." —Mt 19:26

Praise:  St. John was a champion in furthering devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Reference:  (Presentation Ministries offers Healing the Broken Hearted: a Retreat for the Divorced, September 5-6, 2003. For information or to register, e-mail retreats@presentationministries.com or call 937-587-5464.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Richard L. Klug, February 27, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 3, 2003