Joel 2:12-18, 2 Corinthians 5:20---6:2,
Psalm 51:3-6, 12-14 & 17, Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18
My Beloved, You call Your people to turn away from the world and the flesh for a period of time and to be purified. You call us to repentance, to put aside for a while the things of earth in order to better appreciate the things of God. If we do not understand the things of heaven how can we get there? You desire that all of us be saved because You are tender, merciful and compassionate, You do not desire the death of the sinner.
Thank You for this time of recollection, prayer, fasting and alms giving when we spare a thought for our brothers and sisters who are in need. At the end of this sacred period of Lent grant that I might emerge a little more like You.
2 Corinthians 5:20---6:2
Every Christian is a Christ bearer and represents You in the world. Let us not be a scandal when people look at us rather, reconciled to You and to each other, let us resolve to put an end to sin which has made its dwelling in us and strive to live holy lives pleasing to God.
We are Your laborers and grace upon grace is poured upon us in the Sacraments to live out our mission in the world. Today is the day, now is the time, open my ears to hear Your voice and soften my heart so You can mold it and make it like Your own.
Psalm 51:3-6, 12-14 & 17
My Beloved, during this period of Lent wash me so I can be whiter than snow forgive my sins forget my wrongs and restore me. I am a sinner but I desire with Your help to sin no more. Give me a new heart and a new spirit, keep me close to You for if You cast me away I will wither and die. Continue to flood by soul with grace as I frequent the sacraments and strengthen my will to walk in the light of Your truth always. Put a song of praise in my heart so I may rejoice always in Your goodness, Your kindness and Your love.
Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18
My Beloved, here You reveal what is pleasing to God and the manner in which we fulfill our obligations determines whether we will receive our reward from Him or whether we have already been paid by the good opinion we sought by making a public display of what essentially must be done for God's glory alone and for His eyes only.
When I give to the poor I ought not to do it ostentatiously so I will be praised by those who see me. When I pray I must not make a public display that I am praying. God desires that I go into my room, shut the door and pray to Him in secret. And finally my fasts are an act of repentance for having sinned and fallen from grace. Again I am reminded that my fasting ought to be between God and me and must not be paraded before the world in order to be praised. Rather, no one should know that I am fasting since it is a matter between God and me and He will reward me by strengthening my faith, hope and love.