Monday, February 15, 2010

Speed zone ahead

Did you notice how very suitable yesterday's Mass readings were as a "heads up" for Lent? Kind of like those traffic signals that give you advance warning about changed road conditions further up.
Jeremiah and Jesus both observed that prosperity and indulgence create zones of high risk when it comes to spiritual well-being. Why? Are wealth and enjoyment that bad? The answer to that comes in a special way from Jeremiah, who hints that the person with more than enough tends to look at that stuff as if it were the foundation of life. Jesus adds, then, that the poor, the hungry, the sorrowing have it right: they know that this earth does not provide everything we need.
Wednesday, the Church invites us to make that experience concrete. Even the mitigated fast the Church requires of us (so measly, compared to the fasting required of Jews and Muslims, it is embarrassing)--even that tiny bit of fasting is meant to tease us into a renewed recognition of our human limitation, and the open invitation from God to root ourselves, like a tree beside a stream, in his unfailing grace.

So, what are you doing for Lent?

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