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Sermon of the week: Raise our expectations
by Deacon Russ Duggins, St. Joseph’s Catholic Church
Jul 26, 2009 | 1074 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The people who witnessed the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves wanted to make Jesus a king. Here is the one who could rescue them from earthly oppression and give them the food they would need. What a deal! Herod could never make promises like this and the Romans weren’t out to support the best interest of the Jewish people. Why not put this wonder-working rabbi on the throne instead?

However, Jesus rejected their efforts. He wasn’t interested in becoming an earthly king, and He didn’t want the people to settle for something so minor. Instead, He wanted to raise their sights and expectations. Over the next few Sundays we will see Him telling them that this miracle pointed to the greatest miracle of all; that miracle being God sharing His divine life with sinful humanity.

Jesus wants to do more than sustain our earthly existence. He wants to change our very hearts into His. In the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, Holy Communion, He invites us to find life in His body and blood. Many have said that the Eucharist is a security deposit for our coming glory or have referred to it as the medicine of our immortality, the antidote for spiritual death. The food that helps us raise our sights and expectations to focus, not on our worldly existence, but on our relationship with our Creator.

When we approach the table of the Lord, we expect — healing, pardon, comfort and rest. These are all parts of the gift of the Eucharist. Yet, God has a much higher and more powerful agenda: union with Him. Just as bodily nourishment restores our loss of energy, the Eucharist restores us in love and reveals the power and mercy of our Heavenly Father — and does so in a personal, intimate way.

Jesus wants to transform us from the inside out. He wants to empower us so that we can walk in this world with the confidence and authority that He has. Today and every day, Jesus calls us to “raise” our sights and expectations! “Let My body and blood transform you! There is so much I want to accomplish through you!”
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