Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Marching Orders

Ash Wednesday

When you give alms, do not have it trumpeted before you:
When you pray, do not imitate the hypocrites:
When you fast do not put on a gloomy look as the hypocrites do:
Mt. 6:1-6,16-18

Jesus is giving His great foundational teaching on Christian Life in His Sermon on the Mount.  He outlines the radical new way for all people to live.  He is giving the crowds their marching orders.  He is giving me my marching orders.

Today being Ash Wednesday is the day for me to start Lenten resolutions. Church tradition tells me it is a time of Prayer, Fasting and Alms giving and Jesus in today's Gospel tells me how to perform these disciplines; in secret.  Each of these disciplines is contrary to my fleshly nature.  I find it hard to make time for personal prayer, the ten dollar note looks huge on the collection plate and I like to eat.  In a way each of these things has become an idol.  It's time to put God back in His rightful place in my life, above all things; starting today...

Lord Jesus, You know my weakness and yet You call me to holiness.
A clean heart create for me, God; renew in me a steadfast spirit.  Do not drive me from your presence, nor take from me your holy spirit.  Restore my joy in your salvation; sustain in me a willing spirit.  Lord, open my lips; my mouth will proclaim your praise. 

Little Flower, please pray for me.

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