St. Mary's put together a Lenten reflection booklet which we handed out on Ash Wed. in order to have a daily reflection on the Mass readings for the day. Most of the reflections were written by students (a few by staff). Here is today's reflection:
February 22, 2013
Friday of the First Week of Lent
Ezekiel 18:21-28 * Mt 5:20-26
In the first reading, God proclaims if a wicked man turns from his sins, lives righteously, keeps all of God’s statutes and does what is lawful and right, he will have eternal life. Likewise, if a righteous man turns away from his righteousness and commits sins, he will not be remembered for his righteous acts, and he will not have eternal life. A friend of mine once compared this to the flock of one hundred sheep. Jesus, the Good Shepherd, will pursue the one sheep that leaves the flock and will rejoice in the returning of that one sheep to the flock. That lost sheep can be the righteous man or the wicked man. God will rejoice if the wicked man turns from his sin and comes back to him, God will also be sorrowful if the righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin, but will rejoice if that righteous man renounces his sin and turns back from the wickedness he has committed.
We all have the choice of being the righteous person, or becoming righteous by turning from our sin. God’s will for us is to live in righteousness and is sorrowful if we choose sin. During this Lenten Season, I challenge you to reflect on your life: Are you the righteous man, or the wicked man?
Do you have any sins that you need to overcome? Have you confessed them and given them over to God?
Have you strived to avoid even the near occasions of sin–those persons, places or things that lead us to sin?