Archive for March, 2012

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Fifth Sunday of Lent

March 25, 2012

WHAT IS NEW?

In the Gospel this week we are told that unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it produces no fruit.

I have always said that if I was to write an autobiography, I would entitle it, Learning to Unlearn, because my experience of God’s covenant – of learning to live that covenant has required that so much of what I learned about this life – how to survive, how to succeed, how to win friends and influence people – so much of that – had to be unlearned. And I did. And it required death – that is the death of my own ego and pride.

This may not be true for everyone, but it certainly has been true for me and it was certainly true for Jesus. When the time came for Jesus to do what he was called to do – Jesus asked the Father to take that cup away. It was by grace that Jesus died and rose again. The same is true for us.

CLICK HERE for the Readings for the Fifth Sunday of Lent: (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Psalm 51; Hebrews 5:7-9; John 12:20-33)

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Fourth Sunday of Lent

March 19, 2012

TO BE FULLY ALIVE

Today Jesus tells us that light has come to the world so that we might live.  This promise echoes a theme I touched upon last week – that God doesn’t just want us to live, but to be fully alive.

Why does Jesus say that we prefer darkness to the light in today’s Gospel?  To live in the light means that we see all of us – there are no shadows in which we can hide.

All of all the things that keep us from being fully alive, that keep us from living in the light – fear is perhaps the strongest.  What are you so afraid of?  This is a good question for reflection during Lent.

To live fully alive requires great courage.  Any fear is a variation of a lack of trust that God will provide and take care of us.  Too many of us live in anger about the things we cannot do or do nothing about.  The challenge of Jesus is to focus instead on the things you can do!

CLICK HERE for the Readings for the Fourth Sunday of Lent: (2 Chronicles 36:14-16,19-23;  Psalm 137; Ephesians 2:4-10; John 3:14-21)

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Third Sunday of Lent

March 11, 2012

WHAT DO YOU LOVE?

The point is that God wants you to be fully alive.

In the Gospel, Jesus turns over the tables at the temple.  Like so many things that Jesus says and does, it has a double meaning.  Yes, he is concerned about the physical practices of the temple, but also about each of us as a temple of God.

Our bodies are places where God is to be worshipped and many of us seriously need to have a tables turned upside down.  This is why we reflect on the 10 commandments in the first reading today.

All of these commandments ask us a fundamental question:  What do you Worship?  Who/what do you love?  What do you hold of highest value?   What occupies your thoughts and your time?

CLICK HERE for the Readings for the Third Sunday of Lent: (Exodus 20:1-17; Psalm 19; 1 Corinthians 1:22-25; John 2:13-25)

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Second Sunday of Lent

March 4, 2012

OBEDIENCE THAT CHANGES US

Obedience to God is not like obedience to any other authority, because unlike any human authority, God want ONLY what is ULTIMATELY best for YOU. Unlike, human authorities, God cannot be corrupted or swayed by some ulterior agenda.

This is why we are called to be obedient to God even when it does not make sense to us. . . .and often times, it does not make sense to us because we can only see a glimpse of what God sees.

We see a star where God sees a galaxy. We see a person where God sees generations. Our vision is limited to our senses where God’s is infinite.

So when God calls us, we obey – because we trust that God wants only the best for us. . . . even when it is really hard – even when it makes as little sense as the story we hear about today.

CLICK HERE for the Readings for the Second Sunday of Lent: (Genesis 22:1-2,9a,10-13,15-18; Psalm 116; Romans 8:31b-34; Mark 9:2-10)