Study: Reflect on a time when you were forgiven. What steps took place to make it happen?
Pray: Is there something in your life that’s prompting you to repent? Ask the Lord for the strength to do it!
Serve: Is there a situation in your life that you can help bring healing and reconciliation? How might you be an instrument of God’s grace?
Here’s a quick recap of the readings this week:
- 1st Reading: Moses encounters God in the Burning Bush
- Psalm: The Lord is kind and merciful
- 2nd Reading: Paul reminds the Corinthians not to grumble, like the people did with Moses
- Gospel: Jesus calls us to repent
On the one hand we hear how God takes pity on our plight, has great mercy, and longs to heal and love us. On the other hand, we also hear the crucial need to repent – to turn away from our sins and draw near to the Lord.
Remember this: God requires our repentance so that we can freely receive his mercy and forgiveness. Reconciliation means nothing if we aren’t sorry for what we have said and done. What’s more, without repentance we cannot begin to comprehend the unconditional love of Jesus on the Cross.
So what is our path to repentance? Consider these basic steps:
- Take time to review a good Examination of Conscience. If you haven’t looked at one for a long time, click here to see several versions from the US Bishops.
- After you have reflected on the Examination, what speaks to your heart? What sins is your conscience bringing up in your life?
- If the sin is against another, sometimes the easiest thing is simply to go to the person and say “I’m sorry” or “I forgive you.”
- If the sin is bigger, make the effort to go to Confession – one of the greatest gifts we possess in the Church.
The Lord is calling us – out of his awesome grace, mercy, and forgiveness – to repent. Make this Lent extra special, and may all of us take the time to review our hearts and be about the business of God’s healing love.
If you are looking for more material to help you this Lent, you might consider this list of presentations I have offered over the last couple of years. Feel free to check it out and share if you find it helpful:
Note: This post was first published on February 22, 2016.