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If your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out

1 John 4:18: There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
  Let us Pray ...
Heavenly Father, Loving Lord, thank you that we can reverence you without fearing your wrath. Thank you that we can revere your word and yet not be terrified with our inadequacies. May your love in us produce a closer likeness to your holiness, righteousness, justice and mercy than all the laws, threats, and judges combined. We pray in the mighty name of Jesus, who ransomed us from sin and poured out his love upon us. Amen.
  Today's Readings ... (February 24, 2011)
Thursday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time (Infant Jesus Novena Day)
First Reading:  Sir 5:1-8
Responsorial Psalm:  Psalm 1:1-2,3,4,6
Gospel:  Mark 9:41-50
  Meditation on Today's Gospel: (Mark 9:41-50)
In today’s Gospel what does Jesus mean when he says "have salt in yourselves"? Salt gives out a very useful purpose in hot climates previous to the invention of electricity and refrigeration. Salt not only gave food taste, it also protects meat from ruin. Salt was used as a sign of fellowship and the common food. The near-Eastern expression to be disloyal to the salt meant to betray one's Master or some person who was owed faithfulness and devotion. Jesus used the image of salt to explain how his disciples are to live in the world. As salt purifies, conserve, and penetrates, so the disciple must be as salt in the world of human being society to purify, preserve, and go through that society for the kingdom of God and of his virtue and peace. What did Jesus mean by the expression "salted with fire" and "salt becoming saltless"? Salt was frequently put in ovens to strengthen the heat. When the salt was burned off and no longer functional it was thrown out on the road or on the roof top where it would easily get compressed upon. Perhaps Jesus wanted to difference useful salt used for giving flavor and for preserving food with salt which was burned and no longer of much advantage, to encourage his disciples to be faithful witnesses and to not abandon the opportunity to influence others for the kingdom of God through the witness of their lives and their indication to the power of the kingdom of God. Do you want to be on fire with God’s burning love? Paul the Apostle tells us that "God's love has been dispensed into our hearts through the Holy Spirit". God's love cleanses our hearts and compels us to articulate charity towards our neighbor who is created in the image and similarity of God. We were created in love for love. The donations we show to our neighbor in his require expresses the thankfulness we have for the abundant goodness and compassion of God towards us. Jesus declared that any compassion shown and any assistance given to the people of Christ will not lose its reward. Jesus never rejected to give to anyone in need who asked for his help. As his disciples we are called to be kind and bighearted as He is !


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