Study Reminder – Week 8

Am I making choices that are leading me towards sainthood?

To some, that may seem like a lofty goal.  Mother Theresa, most would agree, even while she was alive, it was evident that she was a saint.  However, for most of us, we are not as giving as she, so we may think that we could never be called a “saint.”  That is NOT true. We ALL CAN be saints.  It all boils down to making a conscious decision to make choices that are in line with God’s will for us.

Okay, okay.  Maybe knowing the “right” choices isn’t SO easy, unless God talks to us directly.  But, asking ourselves “is my choice helping me to become a saint” does help us to evaluate our choices in life.  Step back for a moment, and truly think about the choice you have in front of you, and ask yourself, “Which decision will help me toward becoming a saint?” . . . “Which decision follows what Jesus and the Bible tell me is the way God wants me to live?”  Plus, PRAY and LISTEN.  God does talk to us, but we don’t always listen.  He may not directly speak to us, but He will guide our world (i.e. us, others, the environment) so that His will is shown to us.  Just look for his reply to your prayers.

Being a saint means living a Christ-like life.  We must proclaim and live the Gospel.  This isn’t always easy.  When it is hard, we “bear a cross.”  This is the cross Jesus tells us we must bear to have eternal life (see Matthew 16:24-28).  For example, passing up going to the movies or a particular bar with your friends may be hard, but that may be the choice you have to make if it means keeping you from becoming “defiled” (see Matthew 15:10-20).  Sometimes, the question is “will this choice defile me?”  If so, DON’T DO IT!

By taking one step-at-a-time, one choice-at-a-time, we can become SAINTS!

 

For this week, read Matthew 15:1 – 16:28, the study questions in your study guide, and the questions on the Week 8 page (which are also shown below).  Plus, please share your thoughts on the Life Giving Bread Week 8 page or on the group’s Facebook page.

Questions:

  • What verse(s) stood out to you and why?
  • How do you keep your heart pure?  Do you watch, look at, or listen to things that could lead you to sin or that give you sinful thoughts?  Do you say or do things that could lead others to sin? (Matthew 15:17-20)
  • What signs have you seen that remind you of our wondrous God?  Please share! (Matthew 16:1-4)
  • “To take up one’s cross does not refer to enduring whatever suffering comes to life; rather , it refers specifically to the willingness to suffer the consequences for proclaiming and living the Gospel?” (New Collegeville Bible Commentary – The Gospel According to Matthew by Barbara E. Reid)  What crosses do you bear?  How has being a Christian, proclaiming the Gospel, and living a Christ-like life caused you to suffer? (Matthew 16:24-28)
  • Additional Questions found in your study guide or in the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible – The Gospel of Matthew

 

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