First Reading: 2 Timothy 1:1-3, 6-12
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 123
Gospel: Mark 12:18-27
For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord, nor of me, a prisoner for his sake; but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel with the strength that comes from God. (2 Tim. 1:6-8)
Do you remember the old hefty garbage bag commercials? They would always begin by showing a hefty trash bag and showing how much it held and how strong it was, all while shouting "hefty, hefty, hefty!" Then they would flash to a cheap trash bag that would rip and tear and all the trash would fall out, all while saying the phrase "wimpy, wimpy, wimpy." These were great commercials that basically tried to show how a hefty bag was the best and strongest out there, and that any other garbage bag was just not up the the task, it was "wimpy."
In today's first reading, Paul is addressing Timothy, and making a similar comparison between two different types of spirits, a spirit of cowardice and the spirit of God, which bring us power and love and self control. One is associated with the world, while the other comes from above. When looking at these two spirits, it is easy to compare and see which one is "hefty, hefty, hefty" and which one is "wimpy, wimpy, wimpy." We should each be asking for God to send His Spirit on us, for it is through the Spirit that we can live our lives as God intended. We must remember that it is a Spirit that will give us the power to have courage and persevere in this life; to love God and others as we should; and the power of self control which helps us to avoid sin and temptation.
When thinking about the Spirit of God versus the spirit of the world, it is a no brainer which one we should seek. "Hefty, hefty, hefty!"
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, thank you for all that you have blessed us with in this life and for all that you give to us. Lord, send us your Spirit so that we may live as you call us to. Help us to sacrifice and to strain in this life, all for your glory. Lord, you are our God and we are your people, help us to never forget this. We pray for all victims of abuse, and for peace in our world. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.