CATHEDRAL OF ST. HELENA

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  • Deacon Bob Fishman

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year B

This week’s readings are a very interesting mix of different themes and concepts. In our first reading from Deuteronomy, the people are afraid of God’s voice and power, and want Moses to ask God to raise up another prophet who will hear the voice of the Lord and relay it to the people. God allows this but warns that this authority should not be abused or there will be deadly consequences.
In our own lives, how often are we like the nervous Israelites who for one reason or another became afraid of God? We choose to do our own thing rather than listen to God’s Church. We forget the Church is established by Christ’s authority and not ours. Our society has replaced God’s commandments with worldly ones, and our own attitudes and choices replace what God wants in our lives.
Pope John Paul II called this thinking “the culture of death”. St. Paul reminds us not to let the cares in our lives drive us crazy. Rather we should turn to God and offer Him our concerns and anxieties for He is the remedy to what ails us.
Finally, the gospel of St. Mark relays in powerful fashion the divinity and authority of our Lord Jesus shining through as He casts out demons and unclean spirits who, incidentally knew who He was. If the demons know of Jesus, how much more should we as Christians know Him?
The bottom line is this…Are we going to continue trying to juggle as fast as we can? Will we continue to disregard God’s teachings and the teachings of His Church just to fulfill our own sinful choices? It reminds me of the guy on the old Ed Sullivan show who spun plates on sticks. As he got one going, another would start to wobble and ultimately all would crash to the ground. When we try to do it all our selves without God we can be certain the plates of our lives will ultimately crash and become a mess.
Therefore, it is now time to turn all we have, and all of our attitudes and our own self authority over to Him once and for all. We give up our ways to Him who is “the Way”. We lay down our truths to Him who is “the Truth”, and finally we give our lives over to Him who is “the Life”. It is much better then juggling! Something to think about. May God richly bless you always!
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