Saturday, February 23, 2013

First Saturday of Lent: “Today you are making this agreement with the Lord; he is to be your God and you are to walk in his ways.” (Deuteronomy 26: 16-19)

This week’s readings close with a type of inclusion. The first reading is taken from the same chapter of Deuteronomy as the first reading of last Sunday. Then there was the remembrance of the wandering Aramean that brought to light the tie between faith, seeking, and the experience of God. Today we understand how ‘walking in His ways’ is the responsible action, the spiritual worship of the believer who recognizes God and invokes God as such.

Benedict XVI, in his Lenten message, leads us to reflect on the dynamic rapport between faith and works and reminds us of St. Paul’s expression, ‘You have been saved by grace through faith. This does not come from you, but is a gift of God. Nor does it come from works, since no one can boast of it. In fact, we are His work, created in Christ Jesus for good works God has prepared so that we might walk in this way’. (Cf. Ephesians 2: 8-10)

Salvation is a gift, a grace that we cannot obtain with our good deeds. God creates continually. His gifts, we ourselves are His work, a gift He thought of. We are made to participate in every good work, desired by God Himself. He has prepared many so that we might walk in His ways, to accomplish them and make them reach those who do not know God yet, do not feel involved, and do not participate in the benefits that they bring, in the salvific efficacy they contain!

Today in my pause for silent contemplation, I will reflect that if I walk in God’s ways even the impossible becomes possible like loving my enemies, receiving them as indispensable companions on the journey who bring truth to my going.

Lord, You are my God and I want to walk in Your ways, wherever they may lead me. Help me to know Your ways and give me the strength to rise when I am tired, the humility to go back, the joy of having companions on the journey.

The Voice of St. Ambrose, Church Father

Those who walk in Christ, remain without sin. He said, “I alone am the way”. Those who walk in this way cannot err.

- Living Scripure