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Saturday, June 23, 2012

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2 Chronicles 24:17-25
Psalm 89:4-5, 29-34
Matthew 6:24-34

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god, the atm machine?

"Seek first His kingship over you, His way of holiness, and all these things will be given you besides." —Matthew 6:33

Many of us stock our pantry shelves with groceries. We fill our closets with clothes. We fill our bank account with money. By building up stores of clothes, food, and savings, we must be perpetually careful that we don't overstep the bounds of prudence and make the storehouse our provider rather than God.

When we rely on our supplies instead of God, we risk turning God into an ATM machine which we approach only to make a withdrawal when we truly are in need of something. No one has a relationship with an ATM machine. They simply approach the machine impersonally on a transaction basis. No one thanks the ATM machine for dispensing money; no one loves the machine for satisfying a request.

God works on a daily-bread basis (Ex 16:4; Mt 6:11). A big component of this daily-bread provision is the relationship with God which grows daily in intimacy and trust. To approach God only in time of need would be like a spouse who only approached his or her partner when the desire for intimacy arose, but avoided them otherwise. That approach is exploiting and self-centered, rather than self-giving, ever-increasing in love, and constantly present.

Are we subtly allowing the things of the world to displace God as Provider? Trust God alone. Detach yourselves from the things of this world. Love the Lord and put your lives in His hands.

Prayer:  Father, may I have no love for "the things that the world affords" (1 Jn 2:15). I will trust You every day for my needs.

Promise:  "If God can clothe in such splendor the grass of the field, which blooms today and is thrown on the fire tomorrow, will He not provide much more for you, O weak in faith!" —Mt 6:30

Praise:  Margaret prays daily for the salvation of her children and grandchildren.

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

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 29, 2012

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