The Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time – January 29, 2023

This weekend’s readings give us a roadmap to holiness. The Beatitudes are attitudes that put us in the right frame of mind to reach out for holiness. The first beatitude blessed are the poor in spirit, which has nothing to do with earthly wealth, but rather, dependence on God. That stands in stark contrast to the way the world judges success. Our culture believes in independence; God requires radical dependence. We are called to live in the world, but not espouse its values. How do we draw a line of balance between these two contradictory goals? Am I living a life of dependence on God, or do I more often rely on my strength or wealth? These are all questions we should be asking ourselves in prayer.

We see in the second reading that God uses our weaknesses as an opportunity for His glory, not our own, to shine through us. I love that idea, that God uses us as instruments not because we are perfect, but because our flaws point directly to His Glory. Reflecting on our weaknesses is also a great opportunity to work on the humility that is cited in our first reading as a paramount characteristic of His faithful children.

I think a great focus to your prayer this coming week, is one beatitude a day. Research it, learn its subtle intricacies, its applications to your life, its challenge. Knowing that every one of them is necessary to work on, to refine our nature by holy habits.

May the Love, Peace and Grace of God be with You,

Fr. Adam

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