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Thursday, February 16, 2006

USCCB - NAB - Psalm 81
But my people did not listen to my words; Israel did not obey me.
So I gave them over to hardness of heart; they followed their own designs.
But even now if my people would listen, if Israel would walk in my paths,
In a moment I would subdue their foes, against their enemies unleash my hand.
Psalm 81 was part of today's morning prayer. (Week II - Wednesday) This particular passage stood out to me. Sometimes people will ask if their sins are so bad, how come God doesn't punish them? Similar questions include: why are so many bad people richand successful?

Sometimes God doesn't punish in the obvious ways: death, injury, poverty, sickness, etc. Sometimes he punishes us by allowing us to wallow in our sins and not recognize the wrong we're doing. This is a punishment because every sin (whether large or small, mortal or venial) separates us further and further from God. One Mortal sin separates us completely from God, at least until true contrition is made, but repeated mortal sins can make it harder and harder for us to want to return to God. This is the ultimate punishment since it leads to permanent separation from God after death.

So remember, if you're sinning and think God isn't punishing you, he may be and you just aren't picking up on it.

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