And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him. If you see your brother or sister committing what is not a mortal sin, you will ask, and God will give life to such a one—to those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin that is mortal; I do not say that you should pray about that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that is not mortal.
We know that those who are born of God do not sin, but the one who was born of God protects them, and the evil one does not touch them. We know that we are God’s children, and that the whole world lies under the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translation
Tomorrow’s feast of the Baptism of Jesus brings us to the end of the Christmas season. Let’s take time today to recall the graces and gifts that have come to each of us (and those whose lives we have touched) since the beginning of Advent on Nov. 29. How have I welcomed the Lord this Christmas season? In what ways has God stretched and challenged me during these weeks? Where do I find myself now in relationship with my own person, with family and friends and co-workers, and especially with our God? Which Christmas “gifts” do I particularly treasure this year?
These early days of 2016 you and I don’t have a precise roadmap with exact signposts for the year ahead. Thus today’s first reading is helpful: “We have this confidence in God that, if we ask anything according to his will, God will hear us.”
What do I ask of the Lord today, especially in preparation for renewing my promises of baptism tomorrow? Do I have confidence that our God, who has given me so much talent and time and opportunity, will indeed walk with me in holiness and in hope?
—The Jesuit Prayer Team
Take, Lord, and receive my liberty, my memory, my understanding and entire will. You have given everything to me. To you I return it all, to be used wholly according to your will. Give me only your love and your grace: with these I am rich indeed and need nothing more. Amen.
—St. Ignatius Loyola (Click here to download this prayer card.)Please share the Good Word with your friends!