2017 Busy Catholic’s Online Lenten Retreat
Living Lent With Love
Friday, March 24
Return, Israel, to the LORD, your God; you have stumbled because of your iniquity. Take with you words, and return to the LORD; Say to him, “Forgive all iniquity, and take what is good. Let us offer the fruit of our lips…. We will never again say, ‘Our god,’ to the work of our hands; for in you the orphan finds compassion.” I will heal their apostasy, I will love them freely; for my anger is turned away from them. I will be like the dew for Israel: she will blossom like the lily; she will strike root like the Lebanon cedar, and her shoots will go forth. Her splendor will be like the olive tree and her fragrance like Lebanon cedar. Again they will live in her shade; they will raise grain, they will blossom like the vine, and her renown will be like the wine of Lebanon. Ephraim! What more have I to do with idols? I have humbled Israel, but I will take note of her. I am like a verdant cypress tree. From me fruit will be found for you! Who is wise enough to understand these things? Who is intelligent enough to know them? Straight are the paths of the LORD, the just walk in them, but sinners stumble….
Pope Francis’s Reflection
To hear and accept God’s call, to make a home for Jesus, you must be able to rest in the Lord. You must make time each day to rest in the Lord, to pray. To pray is to rest in the Lord. But you may say to me: Holy Father, I know that; I want to pray, but there is so much work to do! I must care for my children; I have chores in the home; I am too tired even to sleep well. I know. This may be true, but if we do not pray, we will not know the most important thing of all: God’s will for us. And for all our activity, our busy-ness, without prayer we will accomplish very little.
(Meeting with Families, Manila, January 16, 2015)
Let us pray.
Loving God, what you desire and dream for me is abundant life. What I desire is to make my home in you. I can be swept up in the sometimes frantic pace of my schedule. I can be held captive by my to-do list with all that I must accomplish before I close my eyes at night. Let me pause often in the midst of my busy day and ask: Where are you? Where am I? And how are we together? Loving God, rest and pray in me today. Amen.
Material in this year’s online retreat is excerpted with permission from Living Lent with Love.
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Published by special arrangement with Creative Communications for the Parish