Joel 2:12-18; 2 Cor. 5:20-6:2; Mt 6:1-6, 16-18
We begin our Lenten journey today. Ash Wednesday is a day to recognize our smallness before God. “Remember, you are dust, and to dust you wil return.” the priest says as he makes a cross of ashes across our forehead.
In today’s first reading, Joel writes about a day of darkness and gloom, a day of events that are a sign of the coming day of the Lord when those who oppose the Lord’s righteous will shall be punished.
It’s easy to believe that all is right in the world when the sun shines and the flowers bloom. It is likewise easy to be afraid when the sky turns black and threatening.
During Lent, we’re called to repentance, rending “our hearts, not our garments,” as the prophet Joel writes (2:13). We’re called to recognize Jesus as our Merciful Savior. The more we turn our gaze toward the Cross, the more grace we will receive to bear our own crosses.
Ash Wednesday is a day of atonement for us. Turn to Jesus with trust and let Him lead you this Lent.
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, help me to glorify Your mercy and lift my heart to You again. Help me to fully surrender to You, knowing that You hold me in the palm of Your hand. Amen
As we begin the holy season of Lent, we are encouraged by these words of Pope Francis: “During Lent, let us all ask the Lord: Make our hearts like yours. In this way we will receive a heart that is firm and merciful, attentive and generous.. a heart that is not closed, indifferent, or prey to the globalization of indifference.
MAY your living out of Lent be a time of many graces and the joy of being made new in Jesus Christ. God bless you all.