One Minute Reflection – 13 February – Septuagesima Sunday – 1 Cor. 9:24-27; 10:1-5, Matthew 20:1-16
“Have I not a right to do what I choose? Or are you envious because I am generous?’ Even so the last shall be first and the first last; for many are called, but few are chosen.” – Matthew 20:15-16
REFLECTION – “One of the robbers crucified with Jesus cried out: “Lord, remember me; it is to you I now turn (…). Remember not my works, for of these I am afraid. Every man has a feeling for his fellow-traveller; I am travelling with you towards death; remember me, your fellow-wayfarer. I do not say, Remember me now, but, “when you come in your kingdom” (Lk 23:42).
What power, O robber, led you to the Light? Who taught you to worship that despised Man, your companion on the cross? O Light Eternal, which gives light to them that are in darkness! (Lk 1:79) “Take courage! Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise” because “today you have heard my voice, and have not hardened your heart” (Ps 95:8). Very speedily I passed sentence upon Adam … but you, who today have obeyed the faith, today is your salvation. By the tree Adam fell away; by the tree you are brought into paradise (…)
O mighty and ineffable grace! The faithful Abraham had not yet entered but the robber enters! Paul also wondered at this before you, saying, “Where sin increased, grace overflowed all the more” (Rom 5:20). They who had borne the heat of the day had not yet entered and he of the eleventh hour entered. Let none murmur against the Master of the House, for He says, “My friend, I am not cheating you. Am I not free to do as I wish with what is my own?” The robber has a will to work righteousness … I accept his faith … I, the Shepherd, have “found the sheep that was lost”; I lay it on my shoulders (Lk 15:5); since he himself has said, “I have gone astray like a lost sheep; Lord, remember me when You come in Your kingdom.” … St Cyril of Jerusalem (315-387) Bishop of Jerusalem, Father, Doctor of the Church
PRAYER – O Lord, we beseech You, graciously hear the prayers of Your people, that we who are justly punished for our sins may be mercifully delivered for the glory of Your name. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).