Here I am Lord – February 2021

If God is for us, who can be against us ?

Romans 8:31

My Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

God asks Adam and Eve, “Where are you?” Now, we also hear Him asking Abraham, where are you? The response of Adam and Eve was cloaked in difficulty because their eyes were closed to God. Abraham does not falter, “Here I am Lord.” On this second Sunday of Lent, God asks us, “Where are you?” Are you drawing near to me? Abraham, in his yes to God, offers himself intensely to God.

My dear people, during the season of Lent, this prayer, Create in me a clean heart, O God, is our perpetual cry to God. This is only possible if we also agree to participate with God to know our weaknesses and failings. It is this prayer to God, which helps us to realize what divides us from each other. This division can grow to divide our family, our friends, and those with whom we work.

We ask the Lord to renew within us a steadfast spirit in order to receive the joy of His salvation. Jesus spoke about God’s kingdom on earth through the parable of sowing seeds.  When we participate with God, our goodness will flourish so we can make him known to those whom we encounter daily. When we try to do things without God, His Kingdom will not flourish.

Pope Francis said, “Human life is born of the love of God. Life grows in love and tends towards love. No one is excluded from the love of God, and in Jesus’s holy sacrifice on the Cross, God conquered sin and death.”

What does self-giving love look like today? It is a daily living with prayer, not just words prayed, but words from the heart. It is the discovery that each moment is filled with wonder and awe as we encounter our family or travel to our workplace. It is seeing people as gifts from God, rather than problems. With God’s grace and strength, we can encounter others with a smile.

It is remembering those who are suffering and sharing treasures with those in need. It is working for the good of all. St. Augustine said of the Eucharist, “Believe what you see, see what you believe and become what you are: the Body of Christ.”

After Jesus has prayed and fasted on the mountain, we hear from the clouds, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” Lent is not about trying to appear worthy before God. It is living selflessly for others! We grow in holiness when we respond to others with sincerity and truth.  Listen to God and be ready with your response, “Here I am Lord.”