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love to obey; obey to love
"Whoever keeps His word, truly has the love of God been made perfect in him." —1 John 2:5
Out of love and obedience, Mary and Joseph kept God's commandments. The commandments required purification of the mother after childbirth and circumcision of the male child on the eighth day after birth (Lk 2:23; Lv 12:8; Ex 13:2). Mary and Joseph could have perhaps been tempted to feel that the special circumstances of the birth of their special Child placed them above the law. After all, many in positions of power have considered themselves above the law throughout human history. However, Mary and Joseph obeyed God's law in spirit, in freedom, in gratitude, in humility, and in love. Their obedience was rewarded with the confirming prophecies of Simeon and Anna (Lk 2:29-32, 34-35, 38).
Often people claim to love the Lord, but fail to obey Him with their lifestyle. The way we show our love for God is to obey His commandments (Jn 15:10; 1 Jn 5:2-3), "and His commandments are not burdensome" (1 Jn 5:3). Show God that you love Him. Obey Him.
Prayer: Father, may I humble myself to simply obey You and Your precepts. Grant that I would never succumb to the temptation of judging my needs and wants to be more important than Your teaching.
Promise: "This Child is destined to be the downfall and the rise of many in Israel." Lk 2:34
Praise: St. Thomas spent his energy defending the rights of the Church against the state and, because of his faithful stand, eventually was martyred for the sake of his faith.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
(For related teaching, order our book, Conversion-Conversations.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 3, 2017
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