It's Not About Us!

02-21-2021Weekly Reflection© LPi

St. Oscar Romero said, “Aspire not to have more, but to be more.” These powerful words provide the perfect framework for a conversion oriented Lenten experience. God is giving us this Lenten sign to stop being concerned about what you have and focus on who you are. This requires that we create a desert space and listen more attentively for God to reveal His presence. It is all so wonderfully simple on the one hand and so incredibly challenging on the other. The message is simple: love God, neighbor, and self. Those simple words make great sense, but we struggle translating them into reality. Our attachments, compulsions, obsessions, addictions, routines, and busyness all anchor us to the “idol of the self,” keeping us mired in our compulsive need for self-aggrandizement. It’s not about us!

God vowed, long ago, to nurture, sustain and protect the relationship He has with His people. He called us into being, nurtures us in being, and sustains us in being. Without the Loving Divine Presence, all life would cease. Once we slow down a bit and clear away some of the clutter, we can see how the journey of our life is unfolding. We can see what brings us in and out of tune with God’s love and how we can better imitate God’s loving fidelity in our relationship with Him. In short, we will see our myopic short-sightedness and figure out how we can better share the Divine Fire within with others. Lent isn’t just about giving stuff up for forty days and indulging again at Easter. We need to push things much farther and wrestle with the question of how we can be more. “Being more” means becoming more fully alive and in touch with the holiness of life and the divinity that lives in and empowers all beings and things. It is realizing that the “quality” of our presence is crucial to being an effective witness and herald of God’s unconditional love.

The illusion we have bought into causes us to believe that the wrong things and systems matter. We tirelessly fight to keep things the way they are, to return to the former ways of doing things or restore some nostalgic fantasy memory of “life in the good old days.” Lent isn’t about maintaining what we have or returning to something that is gone. It’s about becoming something new. It’s about being more focused, centered, convicted, and grounded so that we can be a person who truly loves and treasures being made in the image of God. The secret to Gospel living is not found in accumulating anything for ourselves, even merit points for heaven. Gospel living means learning how to live with less so that others can live with more. The thought of permanently giving something up makes us feel uncomfortable. Truth often does.

Tiempo le Conversión

Preparados o no, estamos en el primer domingo de Cuaresma. El pasado miércoles, 17 de febrero, iniciamos la Cuaresma. La Cuaresma es un tiempo para llevar a cabo más tiempo de calidad en la oración, ayuno y limosna. Estas prácticas cuaresmales ayudan a llegar a la Pascua preparados y ligeros de equipaje. Este tiempo es un llamado fuerte a la conversión. “El tiempo se ha cumplido, el Reino de Dios está cerca. Renuncien a su mal camino y crean en la Buena Nueva”. (Marcos 1:15). El Evangelio de Marcos no explica las tentaciones de Jesús como Mateo y Lucas. Marcos solo lo especifica así: “Enseguida el Espíritu lo empujó al desierto. Estuvo cuarenta días en el desierto y fue tentado por Satanás. Vivía entre los animales salvajes y los ángeles le servían”. (Marcos 1:12-13).

“Es saludable contemplar más a fondo el misterio pascual, por el que hemos recibido la misericordia de Dios. La experiencia de la misericordia, efectivamente, es posible sólo en un ‘cara a cara’ con el Señor crucificado y resucitado ‘que me amó y se entregó por mí’. Un diálogo de corazón a corazón, de amigo a amigo. Por eso la oración es tan importante en el tiempo cuaresmal”. El hecho de que el Señor nos ofrezca una vez más un tiempo favorable para nuestra conversión nunca debemos darlo por supuesto. Esta nueva oportunidad debería suscitar en nosotros un sentido de reconocimiento y sacudir nuestra modorra. (Tomado del Mensaje de Cuaresma del Papa Francisco 2020). ¿Qué debo sacudir de mi persona en esta Cuaresma?

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