It is 18th March 2018. We celebrate the Fifth Sunday of Lent. The readings are from Jeremiah 31:31-34; the second reading is from Hebrews 5:7-9; and the Gospel from John 12:20-30. God takes initiative in loving us, caring for us and forgiving us in a special way during the Lent. In the first reading God expresses God’s special bond for us by proposing a covenant that is written by God in every human heart guaranteeing that God is our guide and teacher who has wiped away all our sins and God promises us that God will never recall our sins anymore on behalf of the new bonding between God and us. God has inscribed the promises of the covenant in our hearts. God requires unconditional loyalty from us to do this covenant. To know and love God is inherently intuitive in everyone us. “All from least to greatest, shall know me, says the Lord, for I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more.” (Jer.31:34). In the second reading, we are all assured salvation by the obedience of Christ by carrying the burden of all our sins and nailed them through His passion, death and resurrection. The prayer of Jesus for us was heard by the obedience, reverence and willingness to suffer for us all shown to the Father. “He learned obedience from what He suffered; and when He was made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him.” (Heb.5:9). The responsorial Psalm prays, “Create a clean heart in me, O God.” (Ps.51:12). We encounter the Lord in agony as He shared the time of glory to be revealed by pulling everyone to Christ predicting his own the most humiliating death on the Cross. God’s love and forgiveness is in each one of us. Yet by time, we are corrupted and souls are darkened by sin and selfishness; unless we all confess our sins in Sacrament of Reconciliation and Penance and spend a quality time in prayer and substantial amount of our resources spent for a life that we are all invited to live, we will remain where we are without being pulled towards Christ. “Unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.” (Jn. 12:24). This is the time to confess, this is the hour to come closer to the Lord, it is the opportunity to sacrifice and to rebuild the broken links with one another. What have you done so far tangibly to give up the selfish ways that brought so much pain and suffering in you and in others? May the Lord help us to acknowledge the covenant of love and forgiveness in action. May God bless you.

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