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Sunday, February 4, 2007

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5th Sunday Ordinary Time

Isaiah 6:1-2, 3-8
1 Corinthians 15:1-11
Psalm 138
Luke 5:1-11

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"a life for a life!" (lv 24:18)

"Woe is me, I am doomed!" —Isaiah 6:5

The Lord appeared to Isaiah and called him to his prophetic vocation. When Isaiah "saw the Lord" (Is 6:1), he thought he would die. He feared God would take his life (see Jgs 13:22; Ex 33:20). Isaiah was mostly correct. When he encountered the Lord, God did take his life. God exchanged Isaiah's old life for a new one. Paul and Peter also encountered the Lord. When they met Jesus, they "died." Jesus took away their old, "sinful" (Lk 5:8; 1 Tm 1:15) lives and gave them new, abundant (Jn 10:10), risen lives.

Jesus calls each of us to be His disciple. When He calls us, we must die to ourselves (Lk 9:23; Jn 12:24). Jesus, "the Resurrection and the Life" (Jn 11:25), came that we might have abundant (Jn 10:10), victorious, and eternally significant lives. If we won't relinquish our old life to Jesus, we can't receive the new life He has for us, since His new life is totally incompatible with our old life (see Lk 5:36-39). This is what it means to live our Baptism, for in Baptism, we died with Christ (Rm 6:3). We literally drowned in the waters of Baptism. Our old self died. Then Jesus could give us His new, risen life. We became His disciples.

Renew your Baptism today. Die to yourself completely. Right now, surrender your life, desires, will, hopes, and plans to Jesus. Give Him your all. Then ask Jesus, "the Life" (Jn 14:6), to give you a new life. He will not leave you disappointed (Rm 5:5).

Prayer:  Father, "to me, 'life' means Christ" (Phil 1:21). I lay my life before You. Do with me what You will.

Promise:  "Do not be afraid. From now on you will be catching men." —Lk 5:10

Praise:  Praise You, Jesus, "the Way, and the Truth, and the Life" (Jn 14:6). You died that we might have abundant life! (Jn 10:10)

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 3, 2006 & September 18, 2006

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