October 16, 2015
St. Hedwig / St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
Rom 4: 1-8
What then are we to say was gained by Abraham, our ancestor according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.”Now to one who works, wages are not reckoned as a gift but as something due.
But to one who without works trusts him who justifies the ungodly, such faith is reckoned as righteousness. So also David speaks of the blessedness of those to whom God reckoned righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the one against whom the Lord will not reckon sin.”
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
Gratitude and Joy
We are saved through faith, and not by works.
There tend to be two kinds of people in the world. Some are always insisting on their “rights.” They want what they’ve earned, what’s “coming to them.” They pay their own way. They find it difficult to accept a gift, which would somehow put them in debt to another, or charity, which would lower them in their own estimation. They are frequently unhappy because they often think they deserve more than what they have.
Other people look at all the good things in their lives, but don’t pretend to have a just claim to any of them. Like Saint Ignatius at the end of his Spiritual Exercises, they see all things coming down from God as gracious gifts and manifestations of his love. Can we live our lives today in gratitude and joy, willing to regard even our crosses as blessings?
—Fr. Peter Fennessy, S.J. is a retreat director and spiritual counselor at Manresa Jesuit Retreat House, Bloomfield Hills, MI.
Give me only your love and your grace.
With these I am rich enough and need nothing more.
—St. Ignatius Loyola
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