Make us one in love and prayer.

“Lord, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare your praise.”

 
We implore your majesty most humbly, O Lord,
that, as the feast of our salvation draws ever closer,
so we may press forward more eagerly
towards the worthy celebration of the Paschal Mystery.

Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. 

Today's Reading

Daily Meditation: 

May our love grow each day.

We are at the half-way point in our Lenten journey today. 
There is so much yet to learn, to examine, to heal, to renew. 
We have a sense of the patterns we are naming and a sense of the graces we are asking for, 
as well as the ways God is working in us.

We want to be ready and our Lord wants us to be confident. 
So we keep asking and we keep giving thanks, throughout our day.

I am the Savior of all people, says the Lord. 
Whatever their troubles, 
I will answer their cry, 
and I will always be their Lord. 

 

Intercessions: 

Christ our Lord came among us as the light of the world, that we might walk in his light, 
and not in the darkness of death.  Let us praise him and cry out to him: 
   Let your word be a lamp to guide us. 

God of mercy, help us today to grow in your likeness, 
 - that we who sinned in Adam may rise again in Christ. 

Let your word be a lamp to guide us, 
 - that we may live the truth and grow always in your love. 

Teach us to be faithful in seeking the common good for your sake, 
 - that your light may shine on the whole human family by means of your Church. 

Touch our hearts to seek your friendship more and more, 
 - and to make amends for our sins against your wisdom and goodness.

Closing Prayer: 

Loving God, 
I hear your invitation, "Come back to me" 
and I am filled with such a longing to return to you. 
Show me the way to return. 
Lead me this day in good works I do in your name 
and send your Spirit to guide me and strengthen my faith. 
I ask only to feel your love in my life today.

May the Lord bless us, 
protect us from all evil 
and bring us to everlasting life. 
Amen.

Daily Reflection
Of Creighton University's Online Ministries

Jeremiah preaches in the Temple (around 609 BCE) and admonishes his listeners about their hypocrisy—their way of life contradicts their pious rituals and sacrifices, which are therefore meaningless in the eyes of the Lord.  Their sacrifices are tainted by disobedience to the covenant relationship and the blood of the innocent.  God neither desires nor requests their sacrifice (Ps. 40); rather he asks for their justice and kindness (Micah 6:8).  Protecting and caring for the anawim—the last, the lost, and the least — is more pleasing to the Lord than all their burnt offerings.  Although God sent his prophets to guide people, to help them discern, and to be obedient to God, yet they “did not listen.”

Like Jeremiah, Jesus too encounters stiff-necked people who accuse him of casting out demons by the power of Beelzebul when he exorcises a man who could not speak.  Jesus counters their arguments:

  • The exorcisms are against Satan’s power. It would be mutiny if Jesus was Satan’s friend.

  • If Jesus worked under the power of Satan, why not say the same of other exorcists? And if they believed that God’s power worked through other exorcists, they ought to say the same of Jesus if they did not wish to condemn their own.
  • Jesus’ exorcisms show that Satan’s power has been broken and God’s reign has come. Jesus’ opponents—if they understood that the Egyptians saw the “finger of God” in Moses’ signs — would realize that in Jesus the Kingdom of God has dawned.
  • Lastly, the simile of the strong man explains that God has defeated Satan and taken away his armor.

Jesus’ words are strong; there is no room for neutrality. We have to examine our commitment to Christ and choose — to gather with him. Or to scatter.

 

by Roland Coelho, S.J.
Creighton University's Graduate School
click here for photo and information about the writer

Daily Meditation by(c) 2013 Don Schwager
Bible Story illustrations by publishing.com 

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