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Fifth Week of Ordinary Time

Gen. 3:9-24 & Mk 8:1-10

Human nature never changes! When God asked Adam if he had eaten from the tree from which he was forbidden, Adam was quick with his excuse, "Don't blame me, blame the woman you gave me.” When Eve was asked what she had done, she was not going to take the blame either, "Don't blame me; blame the serpent in the grass."

Are we any different from our first parents? Do we not find it difficult to take full responsibility for our sins? Most of us could use a good dose of honesty in admitting we are sinners. Every day of our lives we have to face evil. It is impossible for us to overcome it by ourselves. We simply cannot afford to overestimate ourselves any more than we can afford to underestimate the temptations that we have to face. Making excuses and pretending that we are stronger than we are is the pride which comes before the fall.

If we had to fight alone, we would have to give up in despair. But there is no need to struggle alone, provided we stand before God in honest humility and say, "We can't do it alone; we need Your help." Jesus responds to this need just as He responded to the need of the people in the Gospel who had no food to eat. But Jesus gives us more than He gave them. The nourishment of His Body and Blood gives us the spiritual strength to stand firm in the face of temptation. This means there is no need to rely on our own resources.

Lord Jesus, help us to recognise that united with You in the Eucharist, we have all the power we need to remain faithful people, by resisting Satan's temptations and avoiding having to face You with our excuses.

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