Posted by: livingscripture | March 2, 2015

Second Monday of Lent

From the Word of the Day 

“Justice, O Lord, is on your side; we are shamefaced even to this day.”   

 (Daniel 9: 7)   

 How should we live this Word Prodigal son 1

It is a prayer of petition for forgiveness that is woven with praise of God, acknowledging His greatness, His justice, His mercy, and His forgiveness.  It is praise of God that makes way for awareness of one’s sins, with honesty and exactitude.  It expresses the truest sentiment that admission of sinfulness brings – shame.  It is not enough to say that we are sinners and show outward signs of repentance.  We must feel the shame that shows on our face and moves us to free ourselves from the evil we have lived with.  Shame is an honest sentiment, a painful acknowledgement, but one that so involves us as to become evident and allow us to officially distance ourselves from that which has distanced us from God.Today’s first reading is very beautiful.  It is a stupendous school of prayer that summarizes in a few lines how we are to appear before God, how to invoke Him, what to say to Him, when and why to tell Him.

In my pause for silent contemplation, I will ponder my sinfulness but, though I feel shame, I will not remain there but will throw myself into the merciful arms of my loving God and ask His forgiveness.

Lord, do not let shame die upon my face, nor allow the courage to recognize evil die in me.  Help me rather to distance myself from all that is not You.

The Voice of Pier Luigi Celli, Author

The culture of shame is proper to a closely knit society, rich in shared values.  It is a powerful barrier to incoherent behavior.  Perhaps for this reason, it is out of style in our countries.  Without shame, deprived of that embarrassing sentiment which creates a bridge between sin and pride, a society rapidly decays in its ties of solidarity.  It collapses in an ever more solitary and savage individualism.  It corrupts itself.

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