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a stifling trio
"Their progress is stifled by the cares and riches and pleasures of life and they do not mature." —Luke 8:14
Jesus identifies three things that stifle the Word's progress in our lives if we don't surrender them to His lordship:
- cares. We are to cast our cares upon Jesus, because He cares for us (1 Pt 5:7). He is more than "able" (Heb 7:25) to deal with our cares.
- riches. Many of us spend much time working for money to meet our needs and to provide for our future. In so doing, we might be stifling our progress (Lk 8:14). Let's make Jesus our Wealth (Phil 3:8). We cannot give ourselves to both God and money (Mt 6:24).
- pleasures (Lk 8:14). The world does produce pleasures which can satisfy temporarily. However, the world's pleasures are passing away (1 Jn 2:17). If we live for them, we lose our appetite for the things of God (see Prv 13:19). Our pursuit of pleasure displaces our hunger for God. The Lord must be our Pleasure and our Delight (Ps 37:4).
God's Word produces the harvest, but we have to weed out the cares, riches, and pleasures of this world from our hearts to receive "the blessing of God" (Heb 6:7). "Bear fruit through perseverance" in opening your heart (Lk 8:15).
Prayer: Father, may I never "grow lazy" (Heb 6:12) in respect to Your Word. Give me "ears open to obedience" (Ps 40:7).
Promise: "Some fell on good soil, grew up, and yielded grain a hundredfold." —Lk 8:8
Praise: St. Robert embraced the gospel as he shared his intelligence by brilliant teaching as well as sharing his food with the hungry and the poor.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 1, 2011
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