Sunday, March 5, 2017

First Sunday of Lent
I’m blown away by the intimacy and harmony of God’s relationship with Adam and Eve at the beginning of the first reading. It’s a relationship in which the absolute dependency of man upon the God who breathed life into him is embraced, in which the abundant gifts of the loving Father were received with joy by children who knew that they could trust their Dad. But as both the rest of the passage and our own daily struggles make clear to us, this trusting and harmonious relationship did not go on uninterrupted. When, like Eve, our faith and trust in our good Father is challenged, we often find ourselves unable to resist the temptation to grab after control and security for ourselves, allowing this fear to slowly close our hearts to God.

Yet as quick as we are to turn away from the Father, He is even quicker to offer us forgiveness, mercy, healing, and love, as we are told in the second reading. God matches our small-minded, fearful, grasping tendencies with “the gracious gift” of His “abundance of grace;” all we have to do is to open our hearts to receiving it!

Jesus shows us the way in the Gospel, giving us a model of true faith, trust, and obedience that breaks the chains of our self-defeating cycle of sin. He shows us that we can trust in our good Father, and that, by relying wholly on Him, we can be set free to accept His gift of salvation. 

Lord, open our hearts to Your unending, unearned love and mercy. Help us to follow Christ’s example, so that we, too, may learn to trust in You with reckless abandon, and may ready ourselves so that we might receive Your abundant and gracious gift with grateful hearts. Amen.

Miriam Pritschet, ’17 

First Reading: Genesis 2:7-9; 3:1-7
Psalm 51:3-6, 12-13, 17
Second Reading:  Romans 5:12-19
Gospel: Matthew 4:1-11 

Daily Scripture readings can be found online at the USCCB website

1 comment:

Strayton said...

Thank you, Miriam, for a beautiful reflection that resonates and reminds. And perfectly timed for my week. :-) I'll be using this prayer throughout Lent!! With appreciation & love~