Reflections of God's Goodness
Over the years of His public ministry, Jesus could be found preaching, healing, and reaching out to anyone who needed Him. He responded to the outcasts of His time by seeking them out. He showed compassion and loved them. When He met lepers shouting, “unclean,” Jesus not only spoke to them, but He also touched them, and healed them.
Jesus was not afraid to challenge systems or injustices wherever He encountered them. He ate with known sinners. He called a tax collector to be one of His closest disciples. He confronted the religious leaders when they used their power for their own gain and oppressed the people.
If we are to follow, Jesus then we need to do what He does, be who He is.
“. . . Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.”
Jesus’ mission was to bring justice to the world through the transforming power of love. This Lent, reflect on the two greatest commandments and ways to live them in everyday life.
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. . . . You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
We can still use the traditional Lenten hallmarks of prayer, almsgiving, and fasting to help us follow Jesus. We can seek out God’s presence and wisdom daily- listening for His direction.
Pray for the courage to reach out to others, especially those we normally would turn away from: the poor, the sick, those who are different from us. We can ask God to help us more closely live what we believe by loving and helping the most vulnerable among us.
Look for ways to alleviate pain, to feed the hungry and heal the sick. We can reach out to those who suffer from discrimination because of the color of their skin, or where they live, or how they live. We can fast from discrimination ourselves, and from self-indulgence so that we have even more love and resources to give to those in need.
More than ever, our world needs the love God offers through us. May God bless your Lenten practices and bring you joyfully into the light of His Resurrection.
Sister Mary Ann Barnhorn, SNDdeN
“Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.”