Wednesday of the Third Week of Lent Reflection

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However, take care and be earnestly on your guard
not to forget the things which your own eyes have seen,
nor let them slip from your memory as long as you live.

[Deuteronomy 4:9]

Despite Moses’ admonition, we forget. We forget the things which our own eyes have seen. The truth of who we are slips from our memory. We create other idols that gradually lull us away from our primordial relationship to the Lord our God. We forget that the Lord our God, who chooses to be close to us, also liberates us. Like the people of Israel who were called to be a holy people in covenant relationship with God, yet who built false idols, we build our false idols. We forget the nearness of our God and fail to live in relationship to God.

Theodore Ryken also forgot. In their history of the Xaverian Brothers, Brothers Harold Boyle and Jan Devadder write, “during a long and painful period Ryken lost sight of (the) essential aspect of his conversion.” What they are referring to is that despite the fact that Ryken’s own conversion had been a “momentous and decisive reality for him…a conversion has to be an ongoing process.” (The Xaverian Brothers 1839-1989, p.52)

“The bosom of the Father is our own ground and our origin, in which we begin our life and our being,” this week’s Theme reminds us. Perhaps, as those who follow the Xaverian way, this is what we need to remember as we return to the Lord our God: “Reflection, discernment, and eventually conversion of mind and heart will be needed to remain true to God’s call and to the Xaverian identity.” (The Xaverian Brothers 1839-1989, p.53)

 

Exercise

Take 15-20 minutes to slow down and to re-member that you are in God’s presence and that God calls you into relationship. Return to the “bosom of the Father” and rest in that ground.

From that place of rest what do you remember about God’s saving action in your life? What do you remember of your own turning toward God, falling in love with God, and placing yourself in God’s service? How are you invited to re-orient your life today to the primordial relationship the Lord your God offers you today?

 

Prayer

God, You are our ground and our origin. We ask that You give us the grace to accept the “givens” of our life and to face the reality of who we truly are, so that we may return with gratitude to an innocence and nakedness that allows us to see, through new eyes, the incommensurable brightness of your creation. We ask this in the name of Jesus, Your Son and our brother. Amen.

 

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