"Carnal allurements, enticements for the eye, the life of empty show — all these are from the world." —1 John 2:16
The "world," according to John, is the system that operates irrespective of Jesus' lordship. It may or may not explicitly deny Jesus as Lord; however, for all practical purposes, it ignores Him. The world dominates economics, politics, mass media, sports, entertainment, employment, education, and even many churches.
God's word commands us to "have no love for the world, nor the things that the world affords" (1 Jn 2:15). Even a little love for the world is wrong, for "if anyone loves the world, the Father's love has no place in him, for nothing that the world affords comes from the Father" (1 Jn 2:15-16).
A true Christmas is like a buried treasure or a precious pearl. We must put up for sale all that we have to obtain it (Mt 13:44-46). If we have spent some of our resources by compromising with the world, we won't have enough for Christmas. If we let our Christmas be infiltrated by "the world with its seductions," it will pass away (1 Jn 2:17) and leave us empty to face a cold January and a depressing new year.
By the power of the Spirit, make a clean break with the world, worship "day and night in fasting and prayer," give thanks to God, and "talk about the Child" Jesus (Lk 2:37-38). May we be crucified to the world and the world to us (Gal 6:14).
Prayer: Jesus, may I reappraise everything as loss in the light of knowing You (Phil 3:7).
Promise: "I address you, young men, for you are strong, and the word of God remains in you, and you have conquered the evil one." —1 Jn 2:14
Praise: Margaret quietly and obscurely prays before the Blessed Sacrament and in so doing is instrumental in calling down God's graces to change this world for the better.
Reference: (Make a New Year's resolution to be Crucified to the World. Order our tape of that title on audio AV 40A-3 or video V-40A.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Richard Walling, July 7, 2004
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 19, 2004