On Christian Perfection

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 20

beauty-3

 

SOME might find this the most intimidating and discouraging Scripture in the Bible.

Be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matt 5:48) 

Why would Jesus say such a thing to mere mortals like you and me who grapple daily with doing God’s will? Because to be holy as God is holy is when you and I will be happiest.

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A Revolution of the Mind

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 21

Mind of Christ g2

 

EVERY now again in my research, I’ll stumble across a website that takes exception to my own because they say, “Mark Mallett claims to hear from Heaven.” My first reaction is, “Gee, doesn’t every Christian hear the voice of the Lord?” No, I don’t hear an audible voice. But I certainly hear God speaking through the Mass Readings, morning prayer, the Rosary, the Magisterium, my bishop, my spiritual director, my wife, my readers—even a sunset. For God says in Jeremiah…

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Mastery of Self

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 23

self-mastery_Fotor

 

LAST time, I spoke about remaining steadfast on the Narrow Pilgrim Road, “rejecting temptation to your right, and illusion to your left.” But before I speak further about the important subject of temptation, I think it will be helpful to know more of the nature of a Christian—of what happens to you and me in Baptism—and what doesn’t.

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On Innocence

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 24

ontempt4a

 

WHAT a gift we have through the Sacrament of Baptism: the innocence of a soul is restored. And should we sin after that, the Sacrament of Penance restores that innocence again. God wants you and me to be innocent because He delights in the beauty of a pristine soul, re-made again in His image. Even the most hardened sinner, if they appeal to God’s mercy, are restored to a primordial beauty. One could say that in such a soul, God sees himself. Moreover, He delights in our innocence because He knows that is when we are most capable of joy.

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Of Temptation

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 25

temptation2The Temptation by Eric Armusik

 

I remember a scene from the film The Passion of the Christ when Jesus kisses the cross after they place it on His shoulders. That’s because He knew His suffering would redeem the world. Likewise, some of the saints in the early Church deliberately traveled to Rome so that they could be martyred, knowing that it would hasten their union with God.

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The Simple Way of Jesus

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 26

stepping-stones-God

 

EVERYTHING I have said up to this point in our retreat can be summed up in this way: life in Christ consists in doing the will of the Father with the help of the Holy Spirit. It is that simple! In order to grow in holiness, to reach even the very heights of sanctity and union with God, it isn’t necessary to become a theologian. In fact, that might even be a stumbling block for some.

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The Grace Moment

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 27

dishes

 

WHEN God entered human history in the flesh through the person of Jesus, one could say that He baptized time itself. Suddenly, God—to whom all eternity is present—was walking through seconds, minutes, hours, and days. Jesus was revealing that time itself is an intersection between Heaven and earth. His communion with the Father, His solitude in prayer, and His whole ministry were all measured in time and eternity at once…. And then He turned to us and said…

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All Things in Love

LENTEN RETREAT
Day 28

Crown of Thorns and the Holy Bible

 

FOR all the beautiful teachings Jesus gave—the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew, the Last Supper discourse in John, or the many profound parables—Christ’s most eloquent and powerful sermon was the unspoken word of the Cross: His Passion and death. When Jesus said He came to do the will of the Father, it wasn’t a matter of faithfully checking off a Divine To Do list, a kind of scrupulous fulfilling of the letter of the law. Rather, Jesus went deeper, further, and more intensely in His obedience, for He did all things in love to the very end.

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