February 22nd, 2015 – First Sunday of Lent – Year B

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Lent is one of the most important seasons of the church year because it is a time of penitence, an introspective period during which we take stock of our lives and our relationships to discover and change what we must to prepare for Easter. It is a time to experience the spiritual renewal that comes when we engage in this type of “making right” activity. During the forty days of Lent, each of us is encouraged to follow the example of Jesus by sacrificing our own will to the purpose of God.

Every time we respond to a call from God, we receive grace and are interiorly strengthened. As we begin Lent, the desert is not a place for us to fear; but a place of encountering the Holy Spirit. The Spirit can reveal what binds us, as well as what steals from our freedom to be the person God created us to be. The beginning of intimacy with God flows through the exercise of the theological virtues: faith, hope, and love. God uses every trial to strengthen us in these virtues and transform us into the image of His Son.

Throughout the forty days of Lent, pray for an increase in faith, hope and love. The hardest challenge in life is to believe that every moment, whether joyful or difficult, is an occasion to deepen our relationship with God and one another. Ask for the grace to see your trials from God’s perspective. How are these trials opportunities to develop the virtues you are praying for?