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Take The Braces Off

Come to Me, all who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you
Matthew 11:25-30

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Sermon Week Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle A

Scripture Summary Matthew 11:28


Here is a question for all the food experts among us: What edible product contains the following ingredients?...

Carob bean gum, guar gum, corn syrup, soybean and cottonseed oils, cultured cream, salt, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, whole wheat flour, riboflavin, gelatin, carrageenan, cheese cultures, modified food starch, molasses, xanthan gum, baking soda, monocalcium phosphate, cinnamon, vanilla, skim and pasteurized milk, niacin, iron and thiamine mononitrate.

You are absolutely right if your answer is "Sara Lee Classic Cheesecake." For most of us non-experts, this is a mysterious list of ingredients. But to the baker, who is in on the mystery of their relationship to each other, the ingredients are highly intelligible. Metaphorically speaking, cheesecake is what life is all about. For example...

"Nihilism" is a philosophy which holds that there is no meaning and purpose to existence; that life came about accidentally; that because there is no God, no Creator, there is no point to order in the world, no point to values or life-goals, no point to reason, no point to spirituality.

"Theism," on the other hand, is the belief in God as the Creator of existence. The Theist believes that because there is a God, because there is a Creator, there is a point to order in the world -- to values and life-goals, to reason and spirituality. This view of creation is what gives us our reason for living. Theism is a view of life that sees the bits and pieces as parts of the big picture. The real meaning of all those cheesecake ingredients is completely lost on those who do not see them in relation to the goal. "Makes no sense at all," says the cynic who is not in on the recipe. "Makes my mouth water," says the person with an eye on the ingredients but with a heart on the goal.

In his Letter to the Ephesians, St. Paul tells us that Jesus' goal, as "Head of the Church, which is His Body," is to "fill the universe in all its parts" (Eph. 1:22,23). This is the Christian worldview of salvation: to see the [...]

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