Readings for Monday March 21, 2011
First Reading: Daniel 4b-10
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 79
Gospel: Luke 6:36-38
O LORD, we are shamefaced, like our kings, our princes, and our fathers,for having sinned against you.But yours, O Lord, our God, are compassion and forgiveness!Yet we rebelled against you and paid no heed to your command, O LORD, our God,to live by the law you gave us through your servants the prophets. (Dn 4:8-10)
I have worked with youth for many years, and one of the best experiences to have with them is when "they get it." It doesn't matter what "it" is, whether it is math, a new play, or just a simple life lesson; it is always great to see that light bulb go off and to realize that your teaching or coaching isn't in vain.
In today's first reading, we see that Daniel is someone who "gets it." He realizes that the problem is not with God or with His commandments, but rather the problem is with the people. Daniel knows that it is the people who have broken the covenant relationship with God, and it is the people who have sinned and done wrong. But Daniel also gets one other thing, that God is a all about mercy and forgiveness. This is why we have hope, because the God that we serve is so loving that He is willing to forgive us no matter what and welcome us back into His loving and gentle arms.
During this season of Lent, let the light bulb go off in your heads as well. We all need to "get it", and understand that we fall short, but by the grace of God we can overcome our weaknesses and make it to Heaven. If we are willing to put our trust in God, and to rely on Him at all times; there is nothing we cannot get through.
Father above, we thank you for the gift of this day. Lord, please forgive us for all the times that we fall short, help us to never veer from the path you have set before us, but rather cling to you always. Lord, we are your people, help us to never forget who we are. You are God, and we are not. Please be with all those who have fallen away from the Church, may they be brought back into your loving arms. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.