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Thursday, March 1, 2007

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Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
Psalm 138
Matthew 7:7-12

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here she is — miss america

"Save us by Your power, and help me, who am alone and have no one but You, O Lord." —Esther C:25

Esther had just won the Miss America pageant of her time. She was made queen. A royal diadem was placed on her head. A great feast and a national holiday were declared in her honor (Est 2:18). She was showered with gifts and had the finest of everything.

While Esther was being exalted, her people, the Jewish race, were about to be exterminated. Esther was unaware of this crisis. She was living in her own little world of luxury and splendor. Mordecai, her cousin and foster-father, "tore his garments, put on sackcloth and ashes, and walked through the city, crying out loudly and bitterly" (Est 4:1).

This got Esther's attention. She came out of her own little world and into reality. Then she was "seized with mortal anguish" (Est C:12), "prayed to the Lord, the God of Israel" (Est C:14), and thus saved the Jewish race from destruction. Mordecai's message of imminent destruction, with his sackcloth and ashes, broke into Esther's isolated world, and she realized the urgent need to pray the prayer of faith and obey the Lord.

We are in the same situation. Like Esther, we live in our own little TV fantasy-lands. We don't realize the urgency of our times until we see a Mordecai with an ashen cross on his forehead, clothed in the sackcloth of Lent. May you meet your Mordecai.

Prayer:  Lord, whatever it takes, let me face reality and pray reality.

Promise:  "Ask, and you will receive. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and it will be opened to you." —Mt 7:7

Praise:  Hearing how three sisters agreed to give up candy for a year for their ailing father, Marsha was inspired to renew her fasting efforts.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape The Culture of Death on audio AV 73-3 or video V-73.)

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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