Thought for the Week

March 18-24, 2018

Jeremiah gives a very good reason for God’s forgiveness of human sin. Though the world of Jesus’ time was very sinful, it reflects today’s time as well. God made a New Covenant with his people and wrote his law upon their hearts. He says, “I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more.” Jeremiah 31: 31-34

What a consolation to know that our God is so forgiving and merciful. He even sent his Son, Jesus “to be the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.” Hebrews 5: 9 Awe, the key – obedience. All sin is summed up in that one word – disobedience. Jesus himself struggled with obedience in the garden on the Mount of Olives. He begged his Father to take his agony away “…even his sweat became drops of blood.” Luke 2: 39-46 How intense his suffering must have been to have produced this condition. Despite his intense suffering Jesus said, “Father, if it is your will, take this cup from me; yet not my will but yours be done.”

It is so easy for humans to say, “No,” when we want something very badly. The two sided “no” produces a battle. Parents are so acquainted with this situation. They hear it from the little ones to the big ones.
The word “no” should be reserved for evil and all that would lead us away from God. Obedience is a hard road to follow. Lent is a good time to reflect on our “nos.” No, I’m not going to gossip. No, I’m not going to cheat. No, I’m not going to place work before prayer. No, I’m not going to be unkind and spiteful. No, I’m not going to continue being unforgiving. You can make up your own litany and place it in your Bible.

Next week is Holy Week beginning with Palm Sunday. It’s an excellent time to return to Church, if you have neglected this privilege. If you have been faithful, it’s a good time to being going, not because it is an obligation, but because it is a privilege. Say, “Yes” to God’s invitation to spend some time with him and the community of the faithful.

Monday is the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin May. What we know of St. Joseph is limited, but astounding. He would have divorced Mary privately because of her supposed infidelity to save her from stoning. However, when the Angel Gabriel, most likely, explained to him the condition of Mary’s pregnancy, he immediately took her and the child under his protection. He would even take them to an alien country to protect Jesus from execution by Herod. Living among strangers in Egypt for a few years must have been very difficult. He kept watch on who was reigning in Judea and the surrounding territory. When it was safe after a few years, he brought them back to Nazareth. Here he provided for his family as a carpenter and taught Jesus the trade. If only we had one of those chairs Jesus or Joseph made? What a treasure that would be. We don’t know when he died, but it was surely in Jesus and Mary’s arms.
Chapters 1 and 2 of Matthew

May God continue to bless you on your Lenten journey,
Sister Rosemarie Goins, Director