† In William Nicholson's play Shadowlands,
C.S. Lewis says: It doesn't change God. It changes me.
... and this is what the Prayer Journey is all about!
It is meant to change US!
That is why it isn't enough to say prayers
we must reflect quietly on who Jesus is...
we must sit in the Silence, who is God...
we must not always be babbling but patiently listening
because when we are listening God is finally able to be heard.
Scripture is beautiful to read and to contemplate
and we should do that. A rosary that is meditated
is beautiful and a very effective prayer in our lives.
However, Jesus taught us to pray in the desert, in the garden,
wherever He went, always believing, always trusting
always beseeching the Father.
In prayer, we seek Jesus but we need to listen as He speaks to our hearts.
Just as Lent is a time to intensify the Prayer Journey,
it is also a time to purify the soul by fasting and by almsgiving.
Eucharist is the greatest gift Jesus left us!
It is a gift that feeds us, that nourishes our souls,
that strengthens and sustains us.
Yet what a price He paid for us to have this precious gift of Him!,
Before being able to sacrifice Himself and thus
enable us to have Him with us forever
Jesus lead a life of sacrifice, mortification and fasting.
Scripture is filled with images of Jesus breaking bread
at weddings and feasts and all kinds of gatherings.
But if we remain simply with that *image* then we have missed the point.
How many times did Jesus go away into the desert
to fast and to pray to the Father?
Jesus prayed to His Father daily and fasted.
If not, how could He have given His life for us?
It would have been impossible.
A good mother will sacrifice everything for her child. Why?
Because she has known her child in the quiet of the womb.
A mother nurtures, sustains and feeds her child from the moment
of conception... through the pains of child birth.
Before her child was born, she began sacrificing her life
for this child. And such is the image of Jesus.
He tells us in Isaiah that He can never forget us
as a mother can never forget her child!
And so, just as Christ's presence remains with us today
prayer and fasting, like Eucharist itself, influence our daily lives
so that we can be the presence of Christ in the world;
so that each of us can be transformed into another Christ.
Lent is an acceptable time for us to enter more deeply
into the reign of God. The way for us to do this is the way
of prayer, penance and good works of loving service.
Even now says the Lord,
return to me with your whole hearts.
Whenever yo pray, go to your room, close your door,
and pray to your Father in private.
As we begin lent, we are filled with somber feelings,
with a sense of reflectiveness and with deep longing to journey
ever more closely with Jesus, our Redeemer!
This is indeed a time to return to the Lord filled with hope
and longing for what can be as we walk with Him
in a deeper more meaningful way.
We need to learn to "go to our room" ... "close the door
and pray" ... the blessings reaped in quiet prayer with Jesus
are many. It is a time to come to Him with all of our concerns,
brokenness, hurts and pains of life and joys ... expecting
full well that He will be faithful to His promises and will
fill our lives with healing, stronger faith and greater hope!
As we journey together with Christ, I hold all who come here
in heart and prayer. My prayer for you is that you will come to know the Savior as Mary knew Him, especially as she stood
at the foot of the Cross.
† God's blessings as we proceed together on "Our Lenten Journey". †
LENTEN REGULATIONS FOR CATHOLICS
Abstinence ~ Catholics over 14 years of age are bound
to the obligation of abstinence. Abstinence is to be observed
on Ash Wednesday and the Fridays of Lent. On days of abstinence,
meat may not be used at all.
Fast ~ Catholics over 18 and up to the beginning
of their 60th year are bound to the obligation of fasting.
Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are the days of fasting.
On these days, only one full meal is allowed. Two other
meatless meals, sufficient to maintain strength, may be taken
according to one's needs but together they should not equal
another full meal. Eating between meals is not permitted
but liquids, including milk and fruit juices are allowed.
© 2004 Lucie LeBlanc Consentino
† Promises Kept †
Music Playing ~ "Servant King" ~