Malvern Minute – Friday
Malvern Minute

 

March 24, 2017 – Friday of the Third Week of Lent

To love God will all your heart, and your neighbor as yourself,

is worth more than any sacrifice.

Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (mpoletunow@malvernretreat.com)

Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)

A Reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark (12:28-34)

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him,
“Which is the first of all the commandments?”
Jesus replied, “The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul,
with all your mind,
and with all your strength.

The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these.”
The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher.
You are right in saying,
He is One and there is no other than he.
And to love him with all your heart,
with all your understanding,
with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself
is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding,
he said to him,
“You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”
And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
 

Reflect: You are not far from the Kingdom of God. Would that each of us could hear these words from Jesus!  In fact, we will hear these words if we learn to love as Jesus instructs.  He breaks it down and makes it simple for us: You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Simple, but very challenging to live it out. So as we take on all kinds of Lenten practices, if those practices don’t fit into the two commandments above, then perhaps we need to rethink how to please God and why we’re doing what we’re doing. If, however, we love God with all that we’ve got and love anyone we encounter as we’d love ourselves, then Jesus may say to us: “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”

Questions: Do I live each day with the desire to love God with all of my heart, mind, soul and strength and to love my neighbor as myself? How can I live my life more centered on Jesus and other people rather than on myself? What one step can I take today to make that happen?

Pray: Loving God, please give me the grace to love you with all that I have and to love and welcome others with a caring, nonjudgmental life-giving heart.  I ask this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.

Repent, says the Lord; the Kingdom of heaven is at hand!

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ENCOUNTERING THE DIVINE PHYSICIAN (Gospel of Luke 5: 17-26)

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