March 11, 2021
by Beth Samson
Creighton University's Campus Ministry
click here for photo and information about the writer

Thursday of Third Week of Lent
Lectionary: 240

Jeremiah 7:23-28
Psalm 95:1-2, 6-7, 8-9
Luke 11:14-23

Praying Lent

Returning to the Sacrament of Reconciliation

Family Prayer in Lent

What fitting readings for our Lenten season.

“Listen to my voice; then I will be your God and you shall be my people.”
“ Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”

Have you ever felt lost in your faith/spiritual life? Like wandering through a forest or feeling your way through a dark room? I know I have, and those experiences feel lonely. I know that God is with me in those moments, even if I don’t recognize it. The verse from the first reading really stands out to me: “They walked in the hardness of their evil hearts and turned their backs, not their faces, to me.” In those moments of feeling lost or distant, it can feel easier just to stay in the hardness of my heart, in my own stubbornness, then surrender to the Love of God – especially when I know I’ve done wrong or maintained habits that do not nourish my relationship with God. Oh, to be human! But, when I do turn my face to God, when I do let down some of the walls around my heart, do you know what I find? Relief. Peace. Embrace. Love. God wants to be in relationship with us, wants us to accept God’s Love for us, wants us to respond to that Love in love.  

Lent is a time of invitation, a time to make choices, sacrifices, and ultimately surrender to the Love of God, to choose to turn our face to God. By refocusing our attention, by changing our habits, by fasting from excess, and giving more generously to our communities, we are tuning back into God’s love for us and what that means for how we live our lives.

Where do I keep my back to God?
How has Lent allowed me to turn my face more fully to God’s Love?

Loving God, you created us in order to be in loving relationship with us. We acknowledge that there are times when we turn our backs to you. We pray for the grace of surrender, that we might turn our face to you to find relief, embrace, peace, and love. May we always remember that you are beside us, even we feel lost and lonely. Amen.

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