The Easter Triduum…Entering the Mystery

by Angela Lambert

 

 

Burial_of_Jesus_-_Carl_Heinrich_Bloch

During Holy Week we celebrate and reverence Christ’s Paschal Mystery – His Suffering, Death, and Resurrection.  To enter more deeply into this mystery the Church walks in the footsteps of Christ and the Apostles through special liturgies rich with extraordinary practices that recall and connect us in a unique way to the events beginning at the Last Supper and culminating in finding the empty tomb.  These liturgies are called the “Easter Triduum.”  The USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) describe it in this way:

The summit of the Liturgical Year is the Easter Triduum—from the evening of Holy Thursday to the evening of Easter Sunday.  Though chronologically three days, they are liturgically one day unfolding for us the unity of Christ’s Paschal Mystery. The single celebration of the Triduum marks the end of the Lenten season, and leads to the Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord at the Easter Vigil. The liturgical services that take place during the Triduum are: 1. Mass of the Lord’s Supper (Holy Thursday) 2. Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion 3. Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord.

 

What do we mean by Paschal Mystery?  It recalls the sacrifice of the Israelites during the last plague in Egypt.  God told Moses to instruct the Israelites to sacrifice an unblemished lamb, spread its blood on the door posts, then cook the meat and eat it.  Then, when the angel of death came to take the firstborn son of every Egyptian it would Pass-over the homes marked with the blood of the lamb.  Every year at that time the Israelites would recall this event and enter into it through celebrating the Passover.  This was the meal Jesus celebrated at His Last Supper and to which He gave new meaning.

Whereas we ratify contracts today through signatures and notaries, in Old Testament times agreements were formalized in covenants and ratified with blood.  At the Last Supper Jesus instituted the New Covenant ratified in His own blood.  He chose the Passover sacrifice, which celebrated freedom from slavery in Egypt and death by Pharaoh, to reveal the fullness of the covenant through Him, which would free us from slavery to sin and eternal death.  The blood which would be poured out to ratify this agreement would be His own and the sacrificial lamb, finite in its ability to atone for sin, would be replaced with His own perfect sacrifice of infinite value.

Bishop Barron reflected on this mystery using a painting entitled Angus Dei by Zurbaran saying:zurbaran agnus dei

“Holy Week, our time of Passover preparation, calls us to meditate on our unblemished Paschal lamb. This is not to be confused with the cuddly lambs that greet us in the store aisles when we do our Easter basket shopping. The truth of what awaits the Paschal lamb is harsh. Our Lord himself must have seen many similar lambs, awaiting their moment of sacrifice in the temple. As I mentioned in a previous review of Dr. Brant Pitre’s book, “Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist,” we see a description of thousands of unblemished lambs sacrificed in the temple; an event that is hard to imagine, if one gives permission to the imagination to wonder about the harsh sights, sounds and smells. A moderate amount of blood has a distinct smell that is hard to forget, so much blood must have been overwhelming. The bloody sacrifice of thousands of lambs conjures a scene that even Quentin Tarantino would have difficulty recreating.

But what about the “Agnus Dei”? This lamb is different. He is here to remind us of the one sacrifice that is necessary for mankind. The sacrifice that is to pay a debt that he does not owe for we, who owe a debt we cannot pay. Zurbarán has captured this calm moment, of the unblemished lamb, legs bound and prepared for sacrifice. All we must do is follow the story that we know is to come. As Pitre said in his book, “That’s what happens to Passover lambs. They don’t make it out alive.” [p. 164]…”

 

At the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday we contemplate the actions and words of Christ when He instituted the New Covenant.   Christ changed the bread and wine into His own Body and Blood that we too might eat of the Paschal Lamb and receive the gift of freedom from God.

Eucharist and cross

“Then he took the bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” 20And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which will be shed for you.” Luke 22:19-20

 

To change bread and wine into His Real Presence, without a change in appearance, required a supernatural act.  As a result, Christ also instituted the priesthood on that holy night.  Jesus commanded the apostles to “do this in remembrance of Me.” Christ’s words, as the Logos, the divine Word of God, differ from ours.  Whereas my words may or may not have an impact, Christ effects what He says.  In Genesis 1, God said “Let there be light” and there was, along with everything else He created.  When Christ says “do this”, He empowered His apostles to repeat the same miracle.  Christ is the eternal priest who offers His one sacrifice to the Father over and over again for us.  He does this through His priests whom He has consecrated and enabled through the Sacrament of Holy Orders.  In preparation for this office, Jesus began the evening by demonstrating the nature of power in His kingdom.  He washed the feet of the disciples.  Washing the feet of infants is adorable, they’re sweet and pudgy.  The feet of teenagers however become smelly and the feet of grown men who wear sandals, well…

Greatness in Christ’s kingdom is marked by humility, sacrifice, and service.  Below I’ll list the events of each day during the Triduum along with sacred art to illustrate some of the events.  Take time to contemplate some of them and consider how to more closely be yoked to Christ.

 

Holy Thursday: Celebrates the night of the Lord’s Supper

  • Jesus washing the feet of Peter and the apostles

 

Jesus washes Peter's feet

 

  • Passover celebration where Christ institutes the Eucharist and establishes the priesthoodLast Supper

 

 

 

 

 

  • Jesus’ agony in the Garden of Gethsemane

agony in the garden

  • Jesus’ betrayal by Judas

betrayal

  • Jesus is arrested and put on trial before the Sanhedrin

Jesus' trial

Good Friday: Called “Good” because Jesus merits our redemption through His suffering and death.

Day of Fasting and Abstinence – No meat, only eat one regular meal or two small meals Veneration of the Cross

Events:

  • Jesus appears before Pilate

Jesus and Pilate

  • Jesus is scourged

Jesus scourging

 

 

 

 

  • The Carrying of the Cross

carrying cross

  • The Crucifixion

Jesus crucifixion

  • Christ’s death and burial

sorrowful mother

Holy Saturday:

  • Jesus in the tomb
  • Time of emptiness and waiting

The Easter Vigil:  Most ancient practice in the Church – began Saturday evening and ended at daybreak Easter Sunday  “Mother of all vigils”

It consists of four general parts:

1. The Service of Light

In a suitable place outside the Church, a “blazing fire” ( rogus ardens) is to be prepared so that the people may gather around it and experience the flames dispelling the darkness and lighting up the night. Thus do the beauty of the fire, its warmth and its light, draw the liturgical assembly together. EV no.8

 

The Paschal Candle, which will be used to light the baptismal candles throughout the year is also lit from this fire and placed by the sanctuary during Easter.

paschal candle

2. The Liturgy of the Word

This consists of nine readings which give an overview of God’s work of salvation – from His creation of man and woman in the image and likeness of God, their fall to sin, then God’s efforts to restore us through covenants and promises which came to fulfillment in  Christ.

 

7 readings from the Old Testament  • Story of Creation (Genesis 1 and 2) •  Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 22) • The crossing of the Red Sea (Exodus 14 and 15) • The prophet Isaiah proclaiming God’s love (Isaiah 54) • Isaiah’s exhortation to seek God (Isaiah 55) • A passage from Baruch about the glory of God (Baruch 3 and 4) • A prophecy of Ezekiel (Ezekiel 36) 2 readings from the New Testament. • Saint Paul on being baptized into Jesus Christ (Rom 6) • The Gospel of Luke about the empty tomb discovered on Easter morning (Luke 24:121).

3. Christian Initiation

Catechumens (adults who have not been baptized) and candidates (adults baptized in a non-Catholic Christian faith) receive the sacraments of initiation and are received into the fullness of the Catholic Church.  Candidates receive Confirmation and Catechumens receive both Baptism and Confirmation.

4. Liturgy of the Eucharist.

The reception of the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of the Crucified and Risen Lord

Christ is Risen!

peter and john

Octave of Easter: Easter Sunday to the following Sunday (now Divine Mercy Sunday); each day celebrated with special solemnity

Easter Season: lasts from Easter Sunday to Pentecost (50 days)

~ Written by Angela Lambert © 2016

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Receiving Christ’s Gift Graciously…Gospel Meditation for Palm Sunday

by Angela Lambert

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Blessed be the LORD, Who has shown me the wonders of His love.” Psalm 31:22

 March 20th, 2016; Palm Sunday

Gospel of Luke 22:14-23:56

Since the reading is so lengthy, click this link to the passage: Gospel of Luke 22:14-23:56

Meditation Reflection:

Today marks the beginning of Holy Week. I will write another post about the significance of this week’s liturgies, especially the Easter Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil). For now however I want to focus on today – Palm Sunday. The Gospel follows Christ through the events of His Paschal Mystery beginning with His final entrance into Jerusalem and culminating in His death.

Three weeks ago I referenced the Pope’s theology of sin (“Living in Denial” 2/28/16). He teaches that the process of conversion begins with acknowledging our sin, confessing it with contrition to the Lord, then trusting in Christ’s mercy to forgive and heal us. As we unite ourselves to Christ this week, remembering the events of His suffering let us contemplate the third aspect of conversion – trusting gratitude for Christ’s mercy.

In the Office of Readings for today, a sermon by St. Andrew of Crete (d. 740), a bishop, offers a beautiful idea for how to honor Christ today…

So let us spread before his feet, not garments or soulless olive branches, which delight the eye for a few hours and then wither, but ourselves, clothed in his grace, or rather, clothed completely in him. We who have been baptized into Christ must ourselves be the garments that we spread before him. Now that the crimson stains of our sins have been washed away in the saving waters of baptism and we have become white as pure wool, let us present the conqueror of death, not with mere branches of palms but with the real rewards of his victory. Let our souls take the place of the welcoming branches as we join today in the children’s holy song: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is the king of Israel. http://divineoffice.org/lent-hw-sun-or/?date=20160320

This response inspires us to approach holy week with an attitude of deep appreciation; to follow the footsteps of the suffering Christ and feel the grace of His mercy accomplished through His sacrificial love. Numerous Gospel accounts tell of Pharisees or Sadducees wanting to kill Jesus but being unable. Christ could have escaped the Cross, it was within His power. He chose to surrender Himself which was the only reason they could apprehend Him. He chose to suffer as the sacrifice for our sins for the sole purpose of our redemption – to be freed from slavery to sin and death, to experience healing and supernatural strength, to experience union with God as His beloved children, and that our “joy may be full” (Jn 15:11).

Reflecting on Christ’s suffering however, especially if we have the courage to connect it to our own weakness and personal sins, requires more than a small amount of humility. It means we realize our dependence (something we hate in our culture) and our unworthiness. Christ endured things we could not and when asked to offer back something trivial in return we often fail.   How many of us sigh at the length of the reading on Palm Sunday, and yet how much easier to read it than to live it! How much longer it was for Christ to actually endure the events we recall.

Distracted thoughts and limited attention spans will always burden due to our weakened nature from original sin. We can work to minimize our distractions however and lengthen our attention by replacing our thoughts about everyday matters with thoughts of God through regular spiritual reading or listening to Catholic talk radio. We can replace worldly images in our imagination with images of Christ through praying the psalms and listening to Christian music. Rather than secular songs interrupting our prayer, over time Christian songs may interrupt our mundane tasks.

This Holy Week, let’s do our best to, as St. Andrew suggested, lay our transformed selves before Christ. Let us ease His suffering with songs of praise and thanksgiving. Let us offer Him hope on the Cross by demonstrating that His sacrifice would bear much fruit in our lives.  Be a gracious receiver by using the gift Christ gave you to live a holy and joyful life.

Consider:

  • Take time to reflect on those things Christ has conquered in your life – sin, addiction, lies you had believed, fears, pride, loneliness, despair…
  • Examine areas of your life in need of Christ. Imagine His blood washing over them and healing them. Invite Him to free you in that area as a grace of this Holy Week. Resolve to cooperate with Him in this effort.
  • Sacrifice is the proof of love. Christ would have suffered every pain for you alone.

Make a Resolution (Practical Application):

  • Pray the Stations of the Cross.
  • Pray a psalm of thanksgiving each day for God’s help.
  • Pray psalm 21, the psalm Jesus quoted from the Cross when He said, “My God My God, why have you abandoned Me.”
  • Listen to Christian radio on your drive or as you get ready in the morning.
    • Ideas: local Christian music stations; download the Relevant Radio app and listen to Catholic programming.
  • Offer encouragement to someone who is suffering.
  • Offer mercy to someone in thanksgiving for Christ’s mercy to you.

~ Written by Angela Lambert © 2016

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New Beginnings…Gospel Meditation for the 5th Sunday of Lent

by Angela Lambert

woman caught in adultery

March 13th, 2016; 5th Sunday in Lent

Gospel of John 8:1-7 NAB

Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. But early in the morning he arrived again in the temple area, and all the people started coming to him, and he sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. They said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. So he was left alone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.”

Meditation Reflection:

This is the Jubilee Year, a year of new beginnings and forgiveness of debts; freedom and jubilation. During Lent Christ and His Church work to free us from two things that steal our joy – ingratitude and bitterness. To regain our joy we must overcome our own complacency about the gift of our salvation from slavery to sins in our lives. We must also let go of bitterness from the past and show the same mercy and compassion toward others that we have received from Christ. Like the Pharisees and scribes in today’s Gospel, we are quick to demand strict justice for the sins of others while sweeping our own failures under the rug.

As we near the end of Lent, our sacrifices and austerity can feel burdensome and tiring. Our share in Christ’s suffering however also anticipates a share in His resurrection. There’s a saying that one cannot feast until they have fasted. It’s a human reality that when we overindulge on a regular basis we lose the ability to appreciate things. For example, kids who are spoiled with gifts constantly lose a sense of gratitude and, paradoxically, the joy of receiving a gift. Similarly, a person spared the work of chores or academic rigor loses the opportunity for the feeling of self-respect and pride at a job well done. Good work reaps satisfaction and deep joy. As the Psalmist proclaims,

“Those that sow in tears shall reap rejoicing; Although they go forth weeping, carrying the seed to be sown, they shall come back rejoicing, carrying their sheaves.” (Psalm 126)  

Christians experience the same paradox in the life of faith. Examining our sins, rooting them out, asking for help, fasting, and praying is both tedious and sometimes tearful. However, only when we really come to grips with our weakness and sin do we experience the joy of receiving the gift of salvation from our Redeemer.

Resurrection also means newness. We need to let God create something totally new rather than holding on to a past we can’t change. God commands through the prophet Isaiah:

“Remember not the events of the past, the things of long ago consider not; see, I am doing something new!… for I put water in the desert and rivers in the wasteland for my chosen people to drink, the people whom I formed for myself, that they might announce my praise.” Isaiah 43:18-21

Christ offered the woman caught in adultery a new beginning, instructing her to “Go, and from now on do not sin any more.” Christ’s words are more than a suggestion. As the Logos, the divine Word of God, Christ effects what He says. In consequence, when He tells her not to sin anymore, He also empowers her with His supernatural grace to do just that. The weakness she had succumbed to before was not only forgiven, but replaced with strength to act virtuously. The sacraments of Communion and Confession offer the same graces. We receive both forgiveness and the strength of will to change. When we experience this gift of freedom it produces an abundance of joy and gratitude that spills over into a sharing of the same gift with others.

Pope Francis encouraged that, “There is no saint without a past, and no sinner without a future.” St. Catherine of Genoa provides one such example. She was prayerful and devoted as a child. At age thirteen she even tried to enter a convent but was turned away because she was too young. Then at sixteen she entered an arranged marriage.   Catholicsaints.info summarizes it well:

“They were a childless couple, he was careless and unsuccessful as a husband and provider, often cruel, violent and unfaithful, and reduced them to bankruptcy. Catherine became indifferent to her faith, and fell into a depression.” (catholicsaints.info/saint-catherine-of-genoa/)

When she was twenty-six however she regretted deeply her lukewarmness and was ashamed of her current faith life in contrast to her aspirations as a child. She humbly threw herself before Christ by going to Confession and praying for Him to restore her previous devotion. Rather than perfect herself so as to be “worthy” of prayer, she acknowledged her weakness and asked Christ to save her. He responded generously by restoring her faith and, in His superabundance, granted revelations and extraordinary spiritual gifts from God that would last the rest of her life.

Christ offers us a new beginning. Let us pray for the grace to let go of the past and accept a new start.

Consider:

  • Who do you need to forgive? What do you need to let go of from the past?
  • What “new beginning” is Christ offering to you? What is holding you back?
  • Reflect on the mercy the woman in the Gospel experienced and the joy and relief she must have felt. Consider how Christ offers this same opportunity to you.
  • Consider areas of hypocrisy in your own life. What faults do you tend to be most critical toward? What faults of your own do you overlook or refuse to acknowledge?
  • Consider a time you felt truly grateful. What gift did you receive? What made it so special?

Make a Resolution (Practical Application):

  • Pray Psalm 51 each day this week.
  • Choose one thing from the past you are bitter about and decide to let it go. Do something concrete to achieve this.
  • Choose one thing from the past that Christ has forgiven you for but you have not. Lay it before Him each day this week and ask Him to help you surrender it.
  • Practice one work of mercy each day this week.
  • Carry a small stone in your pocket this week. When tempted to criticize or complain grab the stone and hold onto it rather than throw it.

 

~ Written by Angela Lambert © 2016

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Open Arms of the Father…Gospel Meditation for the 4th Sunday of Lent

by Angela Lambert

 

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“But God is indeed waiting for you; He asks of you only the courage to go to Him.”  Pope Francis, The Church of Mercy

March 6th, 2016; 4th Sunday in Lent

Gospel Luke 15:1-3, 11-32

Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So to them Jesus addressed this parable: “A man had two sons, and the younger son said to his father, ‘Father give me the share of your estate that should come to me.’ So the father divided the property between them. After a few days, the younger son collected all his belongings and set off to a distant country where he squandered his inheritance on a life of dissipation. When he had freely spent everything, a severe famine struck that country, and he found himself in dire need. So he hired himself out to one of the local citizens who sent him to his farm to tend the swine. And he longed to eat his fill of the pods on which the swine fed, but nobody gave him any. Coming to his senses he thought, ‘How many of my father’s hired workers have more than enough food to eat, but here am I, dying from hunger. I shall get up and go to my father and I shall say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I no longer deserve to be called your son; treat me as you would treat one of your hired workers.”’ So he got up and went back to his father. While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him. His son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your son.’ But his father ordered his servants, ‘Quickly bring the finest robe and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Take the fattened calf and slaughter it. Then let us celebrate with a feast, because this son of mine was dead, and has come to life again; he was lost, and has been found.’ Then the celebration began. Now the older son had been out in the field and, on his way back, as he neared the house, he heard the sound of music and dancing. He called one of the servants and asked what this might mean. The servant said to him, ‘Your brother has returned and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’ He became angry, and when he refused to enter the house, his father came out and pleaded with him. He said to his father in reply, ‘Look, all these years I served you and not once did I disobey your orders; yet you never gave me even a young goat to feast on with my friends. But when your son returns who swallowed up your property with prostitutes, for him you slaughter the fattened calf.’ He said to him, ‘My son, you are here with me always; everything I have is yours. But now we must celebrate and rejoice, because your brother was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.’”

Meditation Reflection:

We often live in denial of ours sins and this can make it easy to imagine God as loving since we see ourselves as so deserving. When our hearts are struck however by the realization of a failure, when shame settles in our stomach at our weakness or self-centeredness, we can mistakenly assume God views us as a failure too and wants nothing to do with us. The parable of the Prodigal Son however, also known as the parable of the Merciful Father, reveals the truth about authentic love.

The Father had freely given his sons everything in love – life, nurturing their growth, and even inheritance of his estate. The first son responds with obedience, loyalty, and service. The second son responds with ingratitude, an entitlement attitude, and complacency. When he asks for his future inheritance, his father not only allows him to leave but also allows him to take his gifts with him. Mistaking license for freedom the son’s gifts eventually run out and difficult times reveal the short sightedness of his choices. The glamour of evil had worn off and without his father’s gifts he was starving and living worse than pigs.

Some Christians take their faith for granted. The spiritual gifts they had enjoyed from the sacraments, living in Christian fellowship, and possibly growing up in a Christian home seem less glamorous and more restrictive than worldliness. At first, missing mass on Sunday to sleep in, put in an extra day at work, travel, or any number of things might not seem that big of a deal. Next, spending time with worldly friends begins to outweigh Christian friends. As seeming independence and success increase, a person may feel he or she no longer needs God. They too mistake license for freedom, take their gifts from God, and leave. Over time however they begin to experience life without grace. The absence of God’s peace, the kindness of His followers, the richness of Scriptures wanes and they begin to hunger. When hard times hit, without that spiritual connection to God, a person finds themselves starving and desperate. Where can one turn for help? A person who uses others finds themselves being used by others. Alcohol or drugs lose their ability to satiate and only make matters worse if not out of control. All former numbing mechanisms – shopping, eating, gaming, gambling, traveling, even over-working cannot help but rather become enslaving.

When one hits rock bottom, crawling back to God can seem unthinkable and disingenuous. How could you ask God for help now when you so brazenly rejected Him earlier or slothfully let Him fall by the wayside. Don’t you deserve to be miserable? Maybe God is saying “I told you so.”

Jesus tells us otherwise. Our pride imagines God reacting this way. Jesus reveals that God is watching the horizon, waiting hopefully, and running to embrace us when we return. The father in this parable doesn’t accept the demotion suggested by his son. He embraces him, and raises him back to the dignity he had left behind; transforming him from servant of pigs to a son.

The older son’s jealousy reveals a hint of the same mistaken view as the younger son. Although he made the right choice, he still considers his brother’s prodigal lifestyle as glamorous. As a result, it seems like he is being rewarded for leaving and rewarded for returning. However, the father and the younger son know the terrible poverty, anxiety, and shame his choices had brought upon him. The older son, though working in the fields all those years, also enjoyed the peace and dignity of living as his father’s son. He did not have the glamour of debauchery nor did he have the impoverishment of it either. Fr. Dubay, in his book The Fire Within, summarizes this misconception well:

“Contrary to what the world thinks, attachments are killjoys. The worldly man and woman take it for granted that the more they can multiply experiences and accumulate possessions, the more they shall be filled with contentment. They so want to believe this that they will discount a constant stream of evidences to the contrary. Boredom at parties, hangovers after bouts of drinking, heartburn after overeating, aftereffects of drug abuse, emptiness after loveless sexual encounters and failure to find fulfillment in fine fashions or in expensive excursions make it abundantly clear that sense pleasures are not joy. No matter how intense they may be for the moment, they inevitably leave in their wake a vacuous disillusionment. Where one does find genuine joy is in the heart and on the lips of those who have generously given up all else to have Christ.”

God loves us as a merciful father. He pours out blessings in our lives even if we will take them for granted. A little time on our own however and we realize how much we rely on God’s supernatural aid and relationship. He assures us that He is waiting anxiously for our return, running to meet us if we come back to Him and offering us the peace and protection of His home.

Consider:

  • When have you felt truly sorry about something. What motivated the regret?
  • Have you ever experienced the gift of forgiveness from someone?
  • Is there someone you need to forgive?
  • Reflect on the father in the parable looking out at the horizon and seeing his son in the distance. Consider how God is waiting for you with the same longing.
  • Have you ever fallen for worldly deceptions? How did they turn out differently than what you first expected?
  • How does your dignity as God’s son or daughter outweigh and outshine the false beauty of the world?

Make a Resolution (Practical Application):

  • Choose one sinful attachment to surrender and turn to God.
  • Read Psalm 51 each day this week.
  • Examine your conscience each night and pray an act of contrition.
  • Return to God in the sacrament of Confession.

~ Written by Angela Lambert © 2016

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