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Friday, September 11, 2015

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1 Timothy 1:1-2, 12-14
Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 11
Luke 6:39-42

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plank-eyed

"How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me remove the speck from your eye,' yet fail yourself to see the plank lodged in your own?" —Luke 6:42

Jesus says we might have a plank lodged in our eye. If so, He's doing us a big favor to tip us off. We need to remove this plank or we'll blindly fall into the ditches of apathy, sin, hatred, unforgiveness, compulsive behavior, a selfish lifestyle, broken relationships, missed opportunities, or other such pitfalls (Lk 6:39).

If we aren't sure what our plank is, we must ask the Lord to identify it for us. He's surely been trying to tell us how blind we are (see Rv 3:17). If He doesn't tell us directly, it's probably because He's already been speaking to us through our spouses, children, siblings, parents, co-workers, or brothers and sisters in Christ. No doubt they see our plank clearly, and have been trying to tell us about it.

Even if the Lord breaks through our short-sightedness and gets us to see our plank, we might still choose to hold onto it. Because our hearts are hard and twisted (Jer 17:9), we might prefer our familiar plank to a painful removal and a humbling recovery. We might say: "I find the old [way] better" (see Lk 5:39) and prefer the darkness of our plank-eye to the bright light of freedom in Jesus (see Jn 3:19-20).

Jesus is the Carpenter (Mk 6:3), and He knows how to handle planks. Bring your planks, specks, eyes, and life to Jesus. "Fix your eyes on Jesus" (Heb 3:1) and let Him fix your eyes.

Prayer:  "Lord, take the blindness from my eyes, all my arrogance and pride, fill my vision with Your light." "Lord...I want to see" (Lk 18:41).

Promise:  "Grace, mercy, and peace be yours from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord." —1 Tm 1:2

Praise:  Peter and Paula did not offer alcohol at their wedding reception, but instead prayed for the Spirit to bless all present.

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, March 18, 2015

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