Day Twenty of our Lenten Journey – 8 March – ‘Suffer with Christ and for Christ if you wish to reign with Him.’

Day Twenty of our Lenten Journey – 8 March – The Third Sunday of Lent, Readings: 2 Kings 5:1-15, Psalm 42:2-3; 43:3-4, Luke 4:24-30

Imitating Christ with Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

In You is the source of life
and in Your Light Lord, we see light

Psalm 35(36)

And they rose up and tdrove him out of the town and brought him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they could throw him down the cliff.– Luke 4:29

When Christ was in the world, He was despised by men.
In the hour of need He was forsaken by acquaintances and left by friends to the depths of scorn.
He was willing to suffer and to be despised. Do you dare to complain of anything?

He had enemies and defamers. Do you want everyone to be your friend, your benefactor?
How can your patience be rewarded if no adversity test it?
How can you be a friend of Christ if you are not willing to suffer any hardship?
Suffer with Christ and for Christ if you wish to reign with Him.

Had you but once entered into perfect communion with Jesus or tasted a little of His ardent love, you would care nothing at all for your own comfort or discomfort but would rejoice in the reproach you suffer.
For love of Him makes a man despise himself.

A man who is a lover of Jesus and of truth, a truly interior man who is free from uncontrolled affections, can turn to God at will and rise above himself to enjoy spiritual peace.
He who tastes life as it really is, not as men say or think it is, is indeed wise with the wisdom of God rather than of men.

He who learns to live the interior life and to take little account of outward things, does not seek special places or times to perform devout exercises.
A spiritual man quickly recollects himself because he has never wasted his attention upon externals.
No outside work, no business that cannot wait stands in his way. He adjusts himself to things as they happen.

He whose disposition is well ordered cares nothing about the strange, perverse behaviour of others, for a man is upset and distracted only in proportion as he engrosses himself in externals.
If all were well with you, therefore and, if you were purified from all sin, everything would tend to your good and be to your profit.
But because you are as yet neither entirely dead to self nor free from all earthly affection, there is much that often displeases and disturbs you.
Nothing so mars and defiles the heart of man as impure attachment to created things.

But if you refuse external consolation, you will be able to contemplate heavenly things and often to experience interior joy.
(Book 2 Ch 1)

Posted in "Follow Me", DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 March – The Widow of Zareptha – ‘Our flour will be God himself!’ – Luke 4:24-30

One Minute Reflection – 8 March – Monday of the Third week of Lent, Readings: 2 Kings 5:1-15,Psalms 42:2343:34Luke 4:24-30 and the Memorial fo St John of God (1495-1550) and Blessed Vincent Kadlubek O.Cist (c 1160-1223)

“There were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months and a great famine came over all the land. Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow.” – Luke 4:25-26

REFLECTION – “The poor widow had gone out to look for two blocks of wood to bake some brea,: it is at this time that Elijah meets her. This woman is the symbol of the Church because a cross is made of two pieces of wood, the woman, who was destined to die, searches for something by which to live eternally. There is a hidden mystery in this … Elijah tells her: “Go, feed me first with your poverty and you will not run out of your goods.” What a blessed poverty! If the widow received here on earth such retribution, what a reward may she hope to receive in the life to come!

I insist on this point – let us not expect to harvest the fruit of our sowing now, at the time we sow. Here on earth, we sow with difficulty what will be the harvest of our good works but only later on, will we gather the fruits of this with joy, according to what is said: “Those who go forth weeping, carrying sacks of seed, will return with cries of joy, carrying their bundled sheaves” (Ps 125:6). Actually Elijah’s act towards this woman was not her reward, but only a symbol of it. For if this widow would have been rewarded here on earth for having fed the man of God, what a miserable sowing, what a poor crop! She received just a temporal good – a jar of flour that did not empty and a jug of oil that did not run dry, until the day the Lord watered the earth with His rain. This sign that was given to her by God, for a few days was, therefore, the symbol of the future life where our reward could not be lessened. Our flour will be God himself! As the flour of this woman did not run out in these days, we will not be deprived of God for all the rest of eternity … Sow with faith and your harvest will surely come; it will come later on but when it will come, you will reap it endlessly.” – St Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo, Father, Doctor of the Church – Sermon 11, 2-3

PRAYER – Lord our God, make us love You above all things and all our fellow-men, with a love that is worthy of You. May we look to Your Divine Son in love and imitation. Grant we pray, that by the prayers of the St John of God and Bl Vincent Kadlubek we too may be granted the grace to follow Your only Son, no matter our sufferings. We make our prayer, through Christ our Lord, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever amen.