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Sunday, January 5, 2014

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Isaiah 60:1-6
Ephesians 3:2-3, 5-6
Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-13
Matthew 2:1-12

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the wisdom of abandonment

"Nations shall walk by your light, and kings by your shining radiance." —Isaiah 60:3

Wise men and women, like the wise men of the first Christmas, prostrate themselves before Jesus, do Him homage, and give themselves to Him (Mt 2:11). This total abandonment is not a one-time experience, but a way of life — forever.

Wise men and women are great-souled individuals who begrudge nothing to God. They're not looking for the quickest Mass to fulfill their Sunday obligation. Rather, they consider it a privilege to worship the Lord as long as possible. Wise men and women don't ask if they have to go to Confession annually, but they rejoice in celebrating frequently the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Wise men and women consider it a privilege to share their faith in Jesus, especially in situations where they may be persecuted (see Acts 5:41; 13:52). Wisdom is not doing the minimum but always searching for new opportunities to abandon ourselves to the love and will of God. Wise men and women transcend their natural inclinations to selfishness, laziness, and fear. They live supernaturally — by grace and by faith.

The Lord wants to make you a wise man or woman. Are you willing to become wise, to follow the star, to give all to Jesus?

Prayer:  Father, on this Epiphany, give me the fear of the Lord, which is the beginning of wisdom (see Ps 111:10).

Promise:  "See, darkness covers the earth, and thick clouds cover the peoples; but upon you the Lord shines, and over you appears His glory." —Is 60:2

Praise:  Alleluia! Christ "was manifested in the flesh, vindicated in the Spirit; seen by the angels; preached among the Gentiles, believed in throughout the world, taken up into glory" (1 Tm 3:16).

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our leaflet, Evangelism As Worship.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 17, 2013

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