Sunday, 8 March 2015

Let God guide you this Lent - pt 1

As we are in the third week of our Lenten journey, we have been reminded of how great of Lord really is. Over the past three weeks, we have heard in our weekend readings about the great temptations and struggles which Jesus faced while he was in the desert. We also heard about his glorious transfiguration. Now many people often wonder why, during such a solemn time in the church's calendar, we read about a glorious event such as the Transfiguration and more so, why on the second Sunday of Lent. You see, we start our Lenten readings off on the first Sunday of Lent talking about how Jesus retreated into the wilderness and denied himself of his usual lifestyle for 40 days and nights. This is the first lesson for us to take note of, that we will have, in our Spiritual journeys, a dry period in which we must deny ourselves of all that we are accustom to and enter into deep prayer and reflection as Christ did. We will have moments of temptation but we must keep in mind, that in the same way Jesus was tempted by Satan, he resisted it no matter what and we must be like him and do the very same. This is what self-denial is about and when we come out of it, we come out much stronger.
The second Sunday of Lent shifts gears in the Gospel reading since we read about the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ. This reading is fitting to be part of the Lenten reflections since it reminds us that no matter how dry and dull our journey might be at that moment, there is always something glorious to look forward to. By Jesus being transfigured before his few disciples, he was showing them the 'Magnified and Glorified Christ'. We too will have our moments of 'Spiritual Euphoria', also known as our 'Personal Transfiguration' but in order for us to experience such great spiritual heights, we must persevere in the desert moments.
The third Sunday of Lent talks about anger in which Jesus displayed when he saw that his father's house was being used as a market place. In order for us to understand the relevance of Jesus' actions, we must come to realize what actually took place in the temple area and these included animal sacrifice, selling animals to worshipers and many other disrespectful acts. It was at this event when Jesus cleansed the temple which prompted the arrest and death of Jesus Christ. Jesus made reference that 'the temple must be destroyed and in three days will be rebuilt' but to his disciples, they thought it was the physical structure but Jesus later explained them that it was his body in which he was referring to. At that moment, Jesus instituted the idea that temple worship, that is the worship of the physical structure, would no longer be necessary since the temple in which we must hold in highest regard is the temple of Jesus Christ, that is, his actual body. This Lent, we are called to transition our minds in such a way that Jesus remains the center of our lives and our minds.
Brothers and sisters, as we continue on this Lenten journey, may the next few weeks of Lent give us that hope knowing that in the midst of our dryness, we can look forward to something greater.

God be praised,

B. Durham

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