Heeding or Silencing the Conscience
Matthew 14: 1-12
Saturday of the Seventeenth week in Ordinary Time
I will receive the sacrament of reconciliation
by Catholic.net | Source: Catholic.net
Matthew 14: 1-12
Lord, I believe you are
looking for me. You stand ready to come to me in this moment of prayer. You want to help me see your
love and where I can grow to be more like you. Thank you for your patience and goodness with me. I
want to give myself totally to you.
Lord, help me to hear your voice more
1. A Disturbing Voice:
John the Baptist had been sent to prepare the
way for Christ. He was a witness to the holiness of God. He tried to awaken the sense of sin and the
need for repentance. He spoke clearly and was afraid of no one. Sometimes the voice of God in my
conscience can be bothersome, like John's voice was to Herod. Yet a clear reminder of what is right
and wrong is an act of mercy from God. He is giving us a chance to awaken from our lethargy and
realize that our immortal souls are at stake. I should thank God when my conscience reminds me of
things I need to change in my life.
2. What's Wrong With a Little
There is nothing wrong with having celebrations in our life and moments of joy
and relaxation. A Christian's life is rich in moments of happiness. But, as was the case in Herod's
birthday party, there exists the danger of looking for entertainment and relaxation in activities or
pastimes which can simply manipulate our passions, weaken our morals, and deeply offend God. If we
are unable to choose our entertainment wisely we can end up throwing away the richness of our
spiritual inheritance for cheap thrills. Herod ends up as a murderer rather than a good king. His
unchecked passions of sensuality and human respect make him use his power to destroy rather than
protect. I must remember that even in the moments of relaxation I have the responsibility to protect
and foster my Christian identity. I should look for healthy pastimes where I can share the joy of
Christian living with my friends and family.
3. The Proverbial Second Chance:
Herod hears of Jesus, his conscience pricks him. He knew he had killed a man of God. Somewhere in
his heart he knew that God would have the last word. The presence of Christ is an additional grace
that the Father offers Herod so that he may be converted. Unfortunately it is a grace that Herod
will not take advantage of, just as he did not take advantage of the presence of John the Baptist.
In my own life, how many times does the Father have to remind me of my call to holiness? Do I
realize how much mercy the Lord has already shown me? What is it that I am still withholding from
him? Today I will seek a deep conversion of heart in that area where I know I have still been
withholding myself from God.
Conversation with Christ:
Lord, thank you for
enlightening my conscience with your Gospel. Help me to see where I have become deaf or insensitive
to the call of your teachings. I want your grace to triumph in my life. Help me to be brave to
change what offends you and to live a life of Christian authenticity.
will receive the sacrament of reconciliation today and also invite someone else to receive
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