Reflections - February 18, 2018

“Repent, and believe in the gospel.”  Mk. 1:15.
Lent began on Ash Wednesday.  It is forty days of preparation for the mystery of our redemption – Jesus Christ crucified and risen.  The Church proposes prayer, fasting and almsgiving to us.
In the Gospel the Lord, after having been Baptized, goes to the desert and there He fasts, prays, and it tempted.
In the Hebrew mentality, the desert was a place for reflection, prayer, and fasting, but it was also a place of temptation.  Jesus, in His human condition, felt the temptation from the enemy to divert Him from the plan of salvation.  However, by fasting and prayer to His Father, God, He gave us an example on how to overcome the plan of the enemy in the desert of our own lives.
Here I leave you with three traditional ways to get closer to God this Lent.
Prayer:  Convert your “daily life” to an offering to the Lord by elevating your mind and heart by, as Paul says, “praying without ceasing”.  Some examples that occur to me would be to offer good works toward those in need of prayer.  Also, perhaps, to pray the rosary while you are walking or taking your pet out for a walk.  And also to take to prayer for the forgiveness of those you make your life a “yogurt”.
Fasting:  Create in ourselves an awareness of our dependence on God in an environment where we sometimes dispense with Him and put our trust in “idols” that pass.  Perhaps we can be a little more selective in choosing to watch or listen to alienating or manipulative programs.  We can also stop clacking the horn at our brothers in sisters therefore creating, first of all, awareness in ourselves and, above all, generating peace.  Maybe while driving we can listen to Radio Peace.
Almsgiving:  “Realize and open our eyes” doing works of charity therefore having compassion for our needy brothers or sisters as Jesus did, who gave Himself for all even for those who rejected Him.  “Forgive them for they know not what they do”.  Perhaps during this time we can cut certain expenses to assist in works of charity in the Church like buying food for the pantry of the needy in the parish.  We can also give away something that we do not use.
Let us pray to the Lord in this season of Lent to allow ourselves to be “lead by the Holy Spirit in order to find others in the desert of our lives” through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.