“When all these things were made by me and all belong to me? - declares the Lord. But my eyes are drawn to the person of humbled and contrite spirit, who trembles at my Word.” Isaiah 66:2 Whose prayer does God listen to? What are the fundamental virtues we need when we approach His Word? The prophet reveals that the Lord is drawn to the person with these virtues: true humility, deep repentance and reverent fear of God. Let us approach our Lord this way so that He will draw near and reveal Himself to us.
“When Your words came, I devoured them: Your Word was my delight and the joy of my heart; for I was called by Your Name, Lord, God Sabaoth.” Jeremiah 15:16Those whom the Lord has called will find delight in reading and meditating on the Scriptures because it is food for our soul. The Word of God is Jesus Himself, so our joy will be complete only once we devour His Word and allow it to bear fruit in us. So let us try to spend some time everyday nourishing our soul with Sacred Scripture.
We are dust, and unto dust we shall return. “By the sweat of your face will you earn your food, until you return to the ground, as you were taken from it. For dust you are and to dust you shall return.” Genesis 3:19Every year, Ash Wednesday reminds us where we came from and where we will have to return. Be it a king or a beggar, a wise man or fool - everyone has to return to the earth. And what has dust and ashes to pride itself on? As we work tirelessly in this world, let us pause for a moment and reflect: What have I done for the Lord? What am I doing for the Lord? What will I do for the Lord?
“When all these things were made by me and all belong to me? - declares the Lord. But my eyes are drawn to the person of humbled and contrite spirit, who trembles at my Word.” Isaiah 66:2Whose prayer does God listen to? What are the fundamental virtues we need when we approach His Word? The prophet reveals that the Lord is drawn to the person with these virtues: true humility, deep repentance and reverent fear of God. Let us approach our Lord this way so that He will draw near and reveal Himself to us.
“Set your hearts on His Kingdom first, and on God's saving justice, and all these other things will be given you as well.” Matthew 6:33Many of us are hesitant to lead a spiritual life because we presume that we will be deprived of comforts in the world. But our Lord clearly tells us that we will not lose anything if we set our hearts on His Kingdom. May we never forget that the Lord knows what is best for us, and He always makes sure we get the best of the best. Those who seek God, lack nothing good.
Then Simon Peter spoke up and said, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' Matthew 16:16Who was Jesus? Was he a prophet, miracle-worker, teacher, or a new religious leader? For Simon Peter, Jesus could not fit in to any of the descriptions that the people gave. From the depths of his soul, he answered the question of Jesus from what he knew to be the greatest truth, “You are the Son of the living God.”
On him will rest the spirit of the Lord, the spirit of wisdom and insight, the spirit of counsel and power, the spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord. Isaiah 11:2The Spirit of the Lord is sometimes a broad term. Prophet Isaiah, the greatest among the Prophets, describes the gifts of the Spirit of the Lord - wisdom, insight, counsel, power, knowledge, fear of the Lord and devotion to the Lord. Let us pray for the seven-fold Spirit, the same Spirit which was in Jesus Christ.
So do away with all impurities and remnants of evil. Humbly welcome the Word which has been planted in you and can save your souls. James 1:21The Word of God is holy. It cannot abide where there is any uncleanness. Uncleanness of soul begins with pride, grows with human anger and takes root through bitterness. The remedy for all these ills is humility, the virtue which prepares our soul to receive the holy Word of God, and so save our souls.