Lent is the time of giving, giving in and giving up

May the Lord give you grace and peace in Lent through the Holy Spirit.  It is on 24th

May the Lord give you grace and peace in Lent through the Holy Spirit.  It is on 24th February 2023.  We reflect on Isaiah 58:1-9 and Matthew 9:14-15

It is the Worldwide Day of Prayer for Survivors and Victims of Sexual Abuse.  Let us whisper a prayer for those who have been abused.

What does God want from us?

It is indeed the time of prayer and fasting.  It is neither a time of excuse nor a moment to accuse the other for lack of prayer and fasting.

Prayer, penance, and fasting are to connect with one another better not merely to attempt to upgrade closeness to God.

Lent is the time of giving, giving in and giving up.  Without prayer, we cannot have a sense of penance and adequate penance enriches us to pray better.

If our prayer does not help us to be charitable, then there is a serious problem in the way we pray.  The poor are magnified in our eyes and their concerns and struggles are not forgotten after a sincere prayer.

God cannot be appeased by our ritual fasting and pretentious prayers, rather God is impressed we handle the poor, the broken-hearted, and the needy in and around us.  It is not how much time we pray, the number of Way of the cross we do, and personally visiting the Blessed Sacrament that would please God but our inclusion of the less fortunate in sharing the best we have with them.  It is compassion, forgiveness and genuinely loving the poor and the needy integrated with God.

Lent is the time to be spiritual than merely religious.  Rising above our cravings for material madness to spiritual sustenance through acts of love and charity.  Whenever we ignore the poor, we rebel against God.  We can be noticed by God by acts that bring smiles and happiness in the lives of others especially the poor, the orphans, the widows and the needy.  “Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?” (Is.58:7).

The right motivations, intentions, and dispositions for our fasting, praying and doing penance attract God and showers us with blessings beyond burdens.  Our reasons to fast need to include the welfare and wellness of the poor.  The Lenten discipline of fasting and personal penance makes us long for the company of the poor and the bruised Christ in humanity.

Spiritually, we all need to fast from our habitual sins and vices.  A combination of spiritual beyond material strengthens, identifies, and teaches us the right relationship with God and one another.  May God bless your genuine efforts to pray, fast and do penance.

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