Monday, March 3, 2014
I think I'll stop the snow pictures. Maybe the gods of winter think that they are some kind of tribute, praying for more. So here's a bright gift from an iris farm in Oregon.
I used Ash Wednesday's first reading, Joel 2:12-18, for Scripture prayer today. Through the prophet God says, "Come back to me with all your hearts." It's more of a demand than an invitation and it's addressed to all the people. Communal penance is what Ash Wednesday is about. As a parish, a universal Church, and all Christendom, we mark our foreheads with the Cross of Christ. Our sinning affects the whole people. It is as a people that we turn back to God.
God tells us to make sure that this is not just external show but involves our whole heart: "Tear your hearts not just your clothes." We let God break open our hearts and flood them with a Love that becomes our own and carries us back into God.