REPENT!

Wednesday 17th February – Wednesday of the 1st week of Lent

Reflection: Jonah 3: 1-10

REPENT!

The theme of repentance is put before us over and over again in the Church’s calendar as She calls her children to seek forgiveness and turn away from evil. However, this theme becomes even more prominent during this season of Lent. Our Mother Church sets aside forty days to focus on repentance, self-denial and almsgiving as we reflect on the passion of our Lord Jesus and prepare to celebrate His resurrection with brand new hearts and minds.

The call to repentance and reconciliation with God is ultimately for our own benefit. Sin hurts us deeply because it strains or totally severes our relationship with our loving Father who is the only source of peace and contentment. Just as Jonah was sent to preach repentance to the Ninevites so also does the message of repentance come to us again this season. Are we going to respond like the Ninevites who turned away from sin and sought God’s mercy?

Jesus tells us in the gospel reading that our judgement will be severe if we fail to repent. Why? Much more that sending a prophet like Jonah, God has come down to dwell with us through Jesus Christ and shown us the way to repentance and peace with Him. Hence we have no excuse if we fail to listen to Jesus as He speaks in the gospels and through our Priests today. What is that sinful pattern that is taking charge of your life and making you hide your face from God? Dear friends, let us today humble ourselves and ask for God’s mercy. Let us approach Him in the Sacrament of reconciliation and receive His sancitifying grace in the Eucharist. Let us ask for the grace to truly “turn around” and abandon the sinful habits that hold us captive.

PRAYER: Lord, please have mercy on me. Grant me the grace to live a new life in you – a life of sincerity and holiness. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 229What prepares a person for repentance?

The insight into one’s personal guilt produces a longing to better oneself; this is called contrition. We arrive at contrition when we see the contradiction between God’s love and our sin. Then we are full of sorrow for our sins; we resolve to change our life and place all our hope in God’s help.
HIDE A TREASURE: “Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” Acts 3:19 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Jonah 3: 1-10; Psalm 51: 3-4, 12-13, 18-19; Luke 11: 29-32

ARE YOU RIGHT TO BE ANGRY?

Wednesday 7th October -Memorial of our Lady of the Rosary

Reflection: Jonah 4: l-11

ARE YOU RIGHT TO BE ANGRY?

An angry man is again angry with himself when he returns to reason
Publilus Syrus (85-43 BC)

Anger is an emotion that expresses one’s dissatisfaction of a situation. Most of us can identify with this emotion as various events or people may have at one time or another caused us to be angry. Yet, as common as this emotion is, it often clouds our reasoning and may become an opening to greivious sins. We can be quick to condemn Jonah for his anger at the mercy God showed the people of Nineveh. Yet we are often very much like him in our expression of anger and God’s question to him applies to us too: “Are you right to be angry?”

Though we may be unable to determine what people do to us or prevent others from acting in unpleasant ways to us, we can determine how we respond to those encounters. No one has the power to make you angry if you decide within yourself not to get angry. In addition, when we encounter situations that anger us, it is our responsibility as Christians not to remain angry for a long time but to forgive the offender. Hence, scripture tells us: “Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger.” (Eph 4:26).

Examine yourself today. What are those situations that you permit to get you angry? How do you speak and act when you are angry? Is your temper controllable? Beloved, our emotions are within our control and we are responsible for all our actions, regardless of whether or not we were aroused by others. Despite Moses’ intimacy with God and all the efforts and sacrifice he had put into the exodus, he was refused entry into the Promised Land because he was unable to control his temper. Today, ask the Holy Spirit for the grace to be patient and gentle with others and be willing to cooperate with that grace.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, please forgive me for the times I have sinned through anger. Grant me the grace of gentility and self control. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 396 How does a Christian deal with anger?

Paul says, “Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger” (Eph 4:26).  Anger is initially a natural emotion, a reaction to perceived injustice. If anger becomes hatred, however, and someone has ill-will toward his neighbor, this normal feeling becomes a serious offense against charity. All uncontrolled anger, especially thoughts of revenge, are detrimental to peace and destroy “the tranquility of order”.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Be not quick to anger, for anger lodges in the bosom of fools” Ecclesiastes 7:9 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Jonah 4: 1-11; Psalm 86: 3-6, 9-10; Luke 11: 1-4