Posts Tagged ‘renounce all sin’


Love, 2010, by Larry Cole © Larry Cole Art

“Renounce yourself, take up your cross and follow me.” This Lord is Your invitation Lord for me to love and be loved in and through You. For You O Lord are LOVE!

Why have I been so reluctant in the past to take up Your offer? Was it fear of losing my autonomy? Was it fear that I was expected to experience some form of horrible death as You did upon the cross? Was is fear of losing my little enjoyments and pleasures? Fear of this and of that! Was it simply FEAR that prevented me from entering into a deeper relationship with You?

You O Lord had spoken lovingly and ever so often in Your Word telling me each time “Do not fear…”

‘Do not fear for I am with You, do not fear only believe, do not fear little flock.’ And so the truth Lord is that I did not trust You enough to surrender to Your endearing love for me.

I was a fool for going my own way Lord, for there is nothing more fulfilling then falling deeply into Your loving embrace when I renounce myself, take up my cross and follow You. I know now that as I live in the world,  this is not a one time thing but a daily decision.

I have decided this day and every day to trust and follow You, my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen

First reading

Deuteronomy 30:15-20 ·

I set before you today life or death, blessing or curse

Moses said to the people: ‘See, today I set before you life and prosperity, death and disaster. If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I enjoin on you today, if you love the Lord your God and follow his ways, if you keep his commandments, his laws, his customs, you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land which you are entering to make your own. But if your heart strays, if you refuse to listen, if you let yourself be drawn into worshipping other gods and serving them, I tell you today, you will most certainly perish; you will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess. I call heaven and earth to witness against you today: I set before you life or death, blessing or curse. Choose life, then, so that you and your descendants may live, in the love of the Lord your God, obeying his voice, clinging to him; for in this your life consists, and on this depends your long stay in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob he would give them.’

Gospel

Luke 9:22-25

Whoever loses his life for my sake will save it

Jesus said to his disciples:

    ‘The Son of Man is destined to suffer grievously, to be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes and to be put to death, and to be raised up on the third day.’

    Then to all he said:

    ‘If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross every day and follow me. For anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake, that man will save it. What gain, then, is it for a man to have won the whole world and to have lost or ruined his very self?’


If we are to grow in our faith and love of the Lord our God then we must turn away from old habits, even people who will lead us to temptation and sin. We cannot hold back or retain a tiny bit fooling ourselves into believing we have the power to resist the lures. How many turn back to gambling, clubs seeking reprieve from stress through alcohol and sexual escapades. Or some other form of sinful habits. How many turn to the cliques that will cheer us on as we spiral downwards? Why look back when we have found the Lord? Or rather He had found us, carried us on His shoulders and had set us free. Why allow ourselves to fall back into slavery?

Obedience to the Lord our God must always be our first and even perhaps our only priority. For His call to purity and Holiness is so that we can live fully alive and free in His love. We have new life in Him! New wine, fresh skins!’

Strengthen me Lord Jesus in Your love, that I may be Holy as You are Holy. Amen

First reading

1 Samuel 15:16-23 ·
Saul disobeys the Lord and the Lord rejects him

Samuel said to Saul, ‘Stop! Let me tell you what the Lord said to me last night.’ Saul said, ‘Tell me.’ Samuel continued, ‘Small as you may be in your own eyes, are you not head of the tribes of Israel? The Lord has anointed you king over Israel. The Lord sent you on a mission and said to you, “Go, put these sinners, the Amalekites, under the ban and make war on them until they are exterminated.” Why then did you not obey the voice of the Lord? Why did you fall on the booty and do what is displeasing to the Lord?’ Saul replied to Samuel, ‘But I did obey the voice of the Lord. I went on the mission which the Lord gave me; I brought back Agag king of the Amalekites; I put the Amalekites under the ban. From the booty the people took the best sheep and oxen of what was under the ban to sacrifice them to the Lord your God in Gilgal.’ But Samuel replied:

‘Is the pleasure of the Lord in holocausts and sacrifices
or in obedience to the voice of the Lord?
Yes, obedience is better than sacrifice,
submissiveness better than the fat of rams.
Rebellion is a sin of sorcery,
presumption a crime of teraphim.

‘Since you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king.’

Gospel

Mark 2:18-22
‘Why do your disciples not fast?’

One day when John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting, some people came to Jesus and said to him, ‘Why is it that John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not?’ Jesus replied, ‘Surely the bridegroom’s attendants would never think of fasting while the bridegroom is still with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they could not think of fasting. But the time will come for the bridegroom to be taken away from them, and then, on that day, they will fast. No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak; if he does, the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and the tear gets worse. And nobody puts new wine into old wineskins; if he does, the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins too. No! New wine, fresh skins!’