The initial verse 15 we hear in today’s epistle reading (I Timothy 1:15-17) are words each of us offer each week in the Prayer Before Communion. (To that end, we all need to once again begin to recite this prayer if we are coming to Communion. We have become lax in this area, and we need to tighten that up. Copies have been left in each pew). To identify ourself as chief among sinners, is an extreme act of humility, as Saint Paul provides us with this model of repentance. Humility awakens me with the knowledge that without God I am merely nothing more than dust. Our lives, for the most part, are built on self-promotion, affirmation, boasting, justifying, and advertisement. Sin is as old as the devil, and death as old as man. So, how do we overcome what has always stood between man and God? Short answer: awaken the mind. Evil and sin are opposed to the Laws of God. Evil grows and ripens in man’s mind if we allow it to. Thoughts of sin are most likely to end up in the actual act of sin itself. Evil fruit is the result of an evil harvest. A pure mind meanwhile, is a result of continuous prayer and a life lived daily in Christ. The power of the Cross and the truth of the Resurrection contains within it the possibility of destroying sin, if we hold fast to both.