Malankara World

Great Lent Today

Day 10 - Second Wednesday of Great Lent

Opening Prayer

Look kindly, Lord, we pray,
on the devotion of your people,
that those who by self-denial are restrained in body
may the fruit of good works be renewed in mind.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

The Readings (alternate)

Jonah 3:1-10; Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 18-19; Luke 11:29-32

In His Steps - A Lenten Series

Today: At the Jordan: The Spirit Came Like a Dove

Daily Meditation:

Hear our prayer.
The Wednesdays and Fridays of Lent take on a more penitential tone.
Our longing intensifies.
We know we have to work hard to resist temptation
and to change some of our bad habits.
We know that spiritual renewal won't come easy.
But we know that all we will ultimately be able to do
will come from God's inspiration - as a gift.
So we ask from a deeper and deeper place in our hearts.

We listen to the wonderful children's story about Nineveh.
They responded to God's word and repented.

My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;
a heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
Psalm 51

Today's Daily Reflection

by Carrie Wortmann
Magis Catholic Teacher Corp

Jonah 3:1-10
Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 18-19
Luke 11:29-32

Have you ever pleaded with God to give you a sign? I haven't recently, but I can remember a handful of times asking God for a sign. I usually did this when I found myself torn with a decision I needed to make. The idea of signs is interesting to me.

How do we interpret "signs"? How do we know that a sign is actually a sign and not my desire for a sign creating something out of nothing? Does God actually send us signs? I think it's an interesting subject to ponder.

In the readings for today, Jesus says that Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites. Place yourself into the first reading. Imagine yourself as a Ninevite, minding your own business, chopping wood or washing the laundry. Imagine Jonah, a stranger, walking through town shouting that God was going to destroy your town. How would you react? Would you take this as a sign from God?

As I imagine myself in the scene, I think I would be more skeptical. I think I would pass Jonah off as a lunatic and go back to my laundry. If I'm honest with myself, as I publicly wave him off I might also secretly repent out of fear that he was right. I might ask God to give me a sign that his sign is truly a "sign"!

Whether signs are actually inspired by God or our own imaginations, the message of the readings today remains clear: repent. Jonah and the Son of Man preached the same message to different crowds and in different places. The message, preached to us through the Bible, reaches us now in our own town and as we go about our own business. Recognize how we fail to love God and choose sin so that we can repent and join Jesus in heaven at our own judgment.

As we continue through the Lenten season, I pray that each of us repents. God already sent us our sign, his son. Repent and choose God. Choose life, freedom, truth and love.

Preface for Meditation
by Prince Mathew

Fasting is a beautiful period to do good deeds by helping the poor, feeding the hungry, visiting the sick, and taking care of the needs of others. The person who fasts by not yielding to the needs of the flesh, will feel the needs of others and his heart will be moved to serve them. The asceticism of fasting teaches us to care for the heavenly and not be concerned with the earthly. Thus it becomes easy to forsake our material possessions and offer them to the needy.

Lent is training for simple life. Fasting and vegetarianism during the Lent are invitation to overcome the enslaving power of consumerist culture which is based on greed. In the midst of prosperity and over consumption we are trained to enjoy the beauty of a simple life based on need. Lent gives us a wonderful experience of simple life. This freedom from the grip of over luxurious life and enslaving consumerist culture make us sensitive to the basic needs of the poor and the suffering and share with them our resources.

Fasting is more than not eating food. It is more important to fast from sin. Besides controlling what goes into our mouths, we must control what comes out of our mouths as well. Are our words pleasing to God, or do we curse God or our brother? The other members of the body also need to fast: our eyes from seeing evil, our ears from hearing evil, our limbs from participating in anything that is not of God. Most important of all, we need to control our thoughts, for thoughts are the source of our actions, whether good or evil. Let the words of GOD overcome all our five senses on this lent days.

Bible Reading:

Fifty-Day Gospel Planner
(Read all Gospels during the Great Lent)

Evening

Morning

Gospel Readings:

Matthew 18:1-11 (KJV)

At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?

And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,

And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.

But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!

Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire.

And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.

Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.


Luke 11:1-13 (KJV)


And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.

And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.

Give us day by day our daily bread.

And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves;

For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?

And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee.

I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.

And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.

For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.

If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?

Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

Bible Verse for the Day:

"Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven". St. Matthew 18:4

Intercessions:

Blessed be God, the giver of salvation, who decreed that mankind should become a new creation in himself,
when all would be made new. With great confidence let us ask him:
Lord, renew us in your Spirit.

Lord, you promised a new heaven and a new earth; renew us daily through your Spirit,
- that we may enjoy your presence for ever in the heavenly Jerusalem.
Help us to work with you to make this world alive with your Spirit,
- and to build on earth a city of justice, love and peace.
Free us from all negligence and sloth,
- and give us joy in your gifts of grace.
Deliver us from evil,
- and from slavery to the senses, which blinds us to goodness

Closing Prayer:

Dear Lord,
I know you receive what is in my heart.
Let me be inspired by your words
and by the actions of your son, Jesus.
Guide me to make sacrifices this Lent
in the spirit of self-denial
and with greater attention to you
and to those around me.
Help me to believe that you will grant me this
because of the sacrifice Jesus made for me.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen. 

Great Lent Today Archives | Yesterday | Tomorrow

Great Lent Home | Sermons Home | General Sermons and Essays | Articles Home | Library - Home | Baselios Church Home

-------
Malankara World
A service of St. Basil's Syriac Orthodox Church, Ohio
Copyright © 2009-2017 - ICBS Group. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer
Website designed, built, and hosted by International Cyber Business Services, Inc., Hudson, Ohio