Malvern Minute – Thursday
Malvern Minute

 

March 30, 2017 – Thursday of the Fourth Week of Lent

Let the hearts that seek the Lord rejoice;

turn to the Lord and his strength;

constantly seek his face.

 

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 Book of Exodus (32:7-14)

The LORD said to Moses,
“Go down at once to your people
whom you brought out of the land of Egypt,
for they have become depraved.
They have soon turned aside from the way I pointed out to them,
making for themselves a molten calf and worshiping it,
sacrificing to it and crying out,
‘This is your God, O Israel,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt!'”

The LORD said to Moses,
“I see how stiff-necked this people is.
Let me alone, then,
that my wrath may blaze up against them to consume them.
Then I will make of you a great nation.”

But Moses implored the LORD, his God, saying,
“Why, O LORD, should your wrath blaze up against your own people,
whom you brought out of the land of Egypt

with such great power and with so strong a hand?
Why should the Egyptians say,
‘With evil intent he brought them out,
that he might kill them in the mountains
and exterminate them from the face of the earth’?
Let your blazing wrath die down;
relent in punishing your people.

Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel,
and how you swore to them by your own self, saying,
‘I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky;
and all this land that I promised,
I will give your descendants as their perpetual heritage.'”
So the LORD relented in the punishment
he had threatened to inflict on his people.

 

Reflect: They have turned aside from the way I pointed out to them. God is angry with his people. He did everything to rescue them from slavery in Egypt and now they have created an image of a cow to worship as the god that saved them. Oops! God is determined to destroy his people, but Moses intercedes on their behalf. God hears Moses’ pleas and relents. During this time a Lent, is a good time for us to make an assessment of what we allow to be our gods. Might it be pride, power, money, success, sex, drugs/alcohol? We can be quick to say, “Not me! But do you see how so-and-so is living?” We can easily get wrapped up in a lot of vices and find perfect justifications about why it isn’t too bad or not bad at all – after all, we work hard; right? Something can be disordered anytime it takes our eyes away from God, making ourselves or the things of this world our priority. We need to plead before God to take away the blinders that distort the vision of ourselves and the gifts of this world. God points the way to us. Will he condemn us for choosing to go astray? God is merciful, but we need to be careful not to take advantage of his love. We have a responsibility for ourselves to live rightly, just as God appointed.

Questions: What are my priorities and how does my lifestyle reflect what is most important for me? Do I need to stop and take a deep breath to assess what path I’m on? What is one thing, one area of my life that I need to turn over to Jesus today for forgiveness and corrective action?

Pray: Loving God, I humbly turn to you asking for your mercy. Help me to recognize your way and give me the strength to stay on that path without wavering.  I ask this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.

God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son,

so that everyone who believes in him might have eternal life.

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

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