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don't ruin god's plans for christmas
"The Pharisees and the lawyers, on the other hand, by failing to receive his baptism defeated God's plan in their regard." —Luke 7:30
God is all-powerful and all-loving. He wills to love us with an everlasting love (see Jer 31:3). However, God has given us the freedom to defeat His plan in our regard. We can deprive ourselves from receiving God's love by refusing to be baptized in, that is, immersed in repentance (Lk 7:30).
This Christmas season, the Lord has plans for us to experience the breadth, length, height, and depth of His love (Eph 3:18). However, we can defeat the Lord's Christmas plans for us by refusing to repent completely and deeply. Therefore, let's prepare the way for the love of the Lord by celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Without a good Advent Confession, it's unlikely that we'll let God have His way this Christmas season.
Ask the Holy Spirit to help you examine your conscience. Read the Bible, especially the Gospels, to help you prepare for Confession. Also, fast in some way for a day or more in preparation for Confession. Then go to Confession. Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus, not on your guilt, feelings, or self. Thank Jesus for forgiving you. Then anticipate with inexpressible joy (see 1 Pt 1:8) Christ's Christmas coming.
Prayer: Father, may I see Confession as an absolutely essential preparation for Christmas.
Promise: "Raise a glad cry, you barren one who did not bear, break forth in jubilant song, you who were not in labor." —Is 54:1
Praise: Hannah plans her Advent around the reading of the entire book of Isaiah.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape on The Necessity of Confession for Renewal on audio AV 70-1 or video V-70.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 27, 2011
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