Fill our hearts with your love.

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

 
Pour your grace into our hearts, we pray, O Lord,
that we may be constantly drawn away from unruly desires
and obey by your own gift the heavenly teaching you give us.

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: 

Fill our hearts with your love.

Our lesson today reminds us again of God's love and Jesus' desire 
that we love one another as we are loved. 
On this journey, we are learning why this is a challenge for us. 
We are experiencing our human weaknesses and practicing ways to be freer, 
to open our hearts more fully to God's love 
and to give ourselves in fidelity, every day.

You ask us to express our thanks by self-denial. 
We are to master our sinfulness 
and conquer our pride. 
We are to show to those in need 
your goodness to ourselves. 
Preface for Lent III  

 

Intercessions: 

Thanks be to Christ the Lord, who brought us life by his death on the cross. 
With our whole heart let us ask him: 
   By your death raise us to life. 

Teacher and Savior, you have shown us your fidelity and made us a new creation by your passion, 
  - keep us from falling again into sin. 

Help us to deny ourselves today, 
  - and not deny those in need.

May we receive this day of penance as your gift, 
  - and give it back to you through works of mercy. 

Master our rebellious hearts, 
  - and teach us generosity.

Closing Prayer: 

God of Mercy, 
I feel my heart overflowing with your tenderness. 
I sense your loving touch deep within my soul. 
I ask for your help in my weakness 
that I might be faithful to your word 
and I am so grateful 
that your mercy for my failings 
is as strong as your unbounded love for me.

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

Repent, says the Lord- the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.

The third week of Lent may find us fasting, introspective, and pursuing self-conceived levels of atonement for our sins, and in supplication to our God.  We realize through this process that we are poor, lowly, sinful creatures of a great and loving God. In the reading from Hosea, however, we find not a wrathful, angry God who is asking us to find ways to please or appease him, but rather, God is inviting us to return to Him.  He freely offers his love. 
Through many allusions to nature and the agrarian world of the times, Hosea tells us that God is a well- rooted tree that will provide shade and fragrance.  We will be fed and comforted by his presence.  The path of the Lord is straight and leads to His love. If we persist in our sin, we will stumble and falter on the path, but He will patiently be waiting when we arrive.

The Gospel according to Mark could not be a more obvious instruction on how one should walk the path that Hosea described in the first reading. The scribe may be any one of us.

 We need to ask, “which is the most important commandment; which one points the way most readily to salvation? “ It is not a question that most of us would have the courage to answer on our own.  We generally would not think that the commandments should be ranked.  Jesus, however, did not hesitate.  He singled out two commandments.  The greatest is: “Love God with your whole heart, with your soul, with your mind, and with your strength.”   If you do this, you will be filled with the love and power of the Lord.  The second, “Love your neighbor as yourself”, is at the core of all Christianity. It is a straightforward litmus test to be applied to ourselves.  Do we really believe in the love that God asks us to receive from Him and, in turn, show for others? Lent is a perfect time to consider this question as we stumble along the path to God and His eternal mercy. 

Mark’s ending phrase, “…and no one dared to ask Him any more questions,”  could be read,  “No one needed to ask Him any more questions.”  Jesus has told us what is most important.  We do persist, however, in asking God questions.  God is not only loving, but very patient with us.  He will continue to answer our questions.  Thank God! 

by Tom Quinn
Creighton University's Medical School Admissions
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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