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Friday, third week of Lent

March 16, 2012

JMJ

Blessed Friday!

Pour Your grace into our hearts, we pray, O Lord,
that we may be constantly drawn away from unruly desires
and obey by Your own gift the heavenly teaching You give us.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.
(Opening Prayer for today’s Mass)

Readings:
Hosea 14: 2-10 (if we return to God, He will save us)
Psalm 81:6-11, 14, 17 “I am the Lord, your God: hear My voice”
+Mark 12:28-34 (love of God and neighbor are the greatest commandments)

Hear, O Israel!
-Mark 12:29

O Israel, will you not hear Me?
-Psalm 81:9

If only My people would hear Me!
-Psalm 81:14 (emphasis added)

The Word of God avails us not
if we don’t hear,
if it remains a dusty book
upon a shelf,
a Word upstaged
by “lack of time”
and apathy.

We must return!
with open ears and hearts–
there is no other Word,
no other Name
by which we’re saved!
(see Acts 4:12)

Assyria will not save us,
nor shall we have horses to mount;
We shall say no more, ‘Our god,’
to the work of our hands
-Hosea 14:4

God has the key
to unlock treasures
far beyond imagining.

I will be like the dew for Israel:
he shall blossom like the lily;
he shall strike root like the Lebanon cedar.
Again they shall dwell in His shade and raise grain;
They shall blossom like the vine,
and his fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon
-Hosea 14:6-8

We must love Him
with all we are:

God! highest of our loves!

God! deepest in our soul!

God! foremost on our mind!

God! ambition of our strength!

No higher place within our life
than His!

That’s listening.

And when He has our ear,
God speaks,
gives us His mind, His heart,
to see His sons, our neighbors,
as ourselves
and love them too
(as He loves us!).

That’s everything!

What keeps you from really hearing God?
What part of your being is not completely given over to God alone–
and to the keeping of His commandments?
What have you kept for yourself, or given over to someone or something else?
What higher priorities need to be knocked down a peg?
What incentives can help you keep God in first place in your life?

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