GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY – 4TH MARCH 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 4TH MARCH 2017
SATURDAY AFTER ASH WEDNESDAY
1ST READING: Isaiah 58:9-14
PSALM: Psalm 86:1-6
GOSPEL: Luke 5:27-32
THEME: I CAME TO CALL SINNERS
A striking characteristic feature of the Christian faith is that it is the Lord who goes in search of the sinner. We often run and hide but the Lord always comes in search of us and calls us by name.
In today’s Gospel text, Jesus went to the home of Levi, the tax collector, and interacted with other sinners who had gathered there. By this move, Christ distinguishes the sinner from sin. God hates sin but loves the sinner. This is what the ever-complaining Pharisees and the scribes could not grasp. In Christ, God comes to pull the sinner from the mire of sin.
Lent is not a time to mortify our bodies so as to win the love of God. We mortify our bodies because we are loved by God. Lent is not a season to pray fervently so as to win the love of God. We pray fervently because we are loved by God. Lent is not a period to give alms so as to win the love of God. We give alms because God first loved us.
The love of God is enough and available for everyone. However, to experience this love, we have to avail ourselves like Levi. When he heard the words, “follow me”, we read, “…he left everything, and rose and followed him” (Lk. 5:28). There ae two key movements in this verse – leaving and following.
The season of Lent invites us to leave behind anything and everything that hinders us from experiencing the love of God and becoming what God had in mind when He created us. Secondly, the goal of Lent is imitation of Christ. It is in taking conscientious efforts to follow Christ that we become like him.
During this time of Lent, may we endeavour to let go and let God take charge of us. This would certainly bring us holiness and glory.
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, before ever I was, you loved me. You still love me and you will continue to love me in the future. I renounce all that hinders me from following you and I open my heart to you anew. Amen
Andrews Obeng, SVD
DIVINE WORD MISSIONARIES
BIBLICAL PASTORAL MINISTRY
“May the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace. And may the heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people” (St. Arnold Janssen)