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Saturday, January 8, 2011

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1 John 5:14-21
Psalm 149:1-6, 9
John 3:22-30

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the humble spirit

"The Groom's best man waits there listening for Him and is overjoyed to hear His voice." —John 3:29

Tomorrow we celebrate the Baptism of Jesus, the last day of the Christmas season. This can literally be one of the most important and precious days of our lives. Throughout this Christmas season, the Lord has given us countless opportunities to let Him transform our hearts. Our hearts may now be open to the Lord in a new and more humble way.

Humility is the key to receiving the Holy Spirit in a new way tomorrow. We must say with John the Baptizer: "He (Jesus) must increase, while I must decrease" (Jn 3:30). When John was asked who he was, he could have truthfully answered: "I am the greatest man ever born" (see Mt 11:11). Yet, John was humble enough to claim to be only "a voice in the desert" (Jn 1:23).

Before Mary was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit and conceived Jesus, she humbly called herself "the handmaid of the Lord" (Lk 1:38, JB). She could have claimed to be the mother of God and the most blessed woman of all times (see Lk 1:48).

Jesus humbled Himself before the Spirit descended on Him. Jesus "appeared before John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. John tried to refuse Him with the protest, 'I should be baptized by You, yet You come to me!' Jesus answered: 'Give in for now. We must do this if we would fulfill all of God's demands' " (Mt 3:13-15). Let us likewise approach tomorrow's feast with humility. Let us receive the Holy Spirit.

Prayer:  Father, may I humble myself (Mt 23:12) as Your Son did at Bethlehem in the manger.

Promise:  "Anyone who sees his brother sinning, if the sin is not deadly, should petition God, and thus life will be given to the sinner." —1 Jn 5:16

Praise:  Seeing Jesus work through him to minister to others has humbled David to want to receive more of His love.

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 28, 2010

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