Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18
Wednesday Eighth Week in Ordinary Time
I will make a Lenten program of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
by Father Alex Yeung, LC | Source: Catholic.net
Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18
Lord, you know
how much I need you and depend on you. You know my weakness and my faults. I put all my confidence
in your love and mercy in my daily actions. I hope to learn to trust more in your power, your
promise, and your grace. Lord, I wish to start this season of Lent with a sincere desire to grow in
love, preparing myself worthily to celebrate the mysteries of your passion, death and
Lord, help me learn to change what needs to change
in my life.
1. Lenten Practices:
As we begin the Lenten season, we are reminded
of the need to make reparation for our sins and be reconciled with God. Any attempt to build a
spiritual life that neglects the pillars of prayer, fasting and almsgiving is building on sand.
Prayer purifies our intentions and relates all we do to God. Fasting detaches us from our comfort
and from ourselves. Almsgiving reflects our brotherhood with the poor of Jesus family and reminds us
that our true wealth is not in things, but in the love of God. We all need to do a reality check on
our spiritual lives to make sure we are committed to prayer, fasting and almsgiving.
Not for Show:
Jesus is severe in criticizing the hypocrites who parade their works before
others to get attention. Such parades are of no use in pleasing God or making up for our sins; they
only add to our sinfulness. He encourages us to pray in private, to fast and to give alms in secret,
without calling the attention of others to what we are doing. In this way we can be sure we are
doing all for love of God and not for love of self. Those who make an outward show of piety or
generosity "have already received their reward" in this world, and they store up no treasure in
heaven. Let us work silently and discreetly, with no other intention but pleasing God alone.
3. God Loves a Joyful Giver:
Nothing brings us closer to Christ than walking
alongside him and doing the things he did for love of God the Father. During Lent, God invites us to
purify our hearts and minds and to turn our intentions back to him. Christ's public ministry was
lived each day in loving obedience to the Father's will. Our Lenten program should reflect that same
simple, yet demanding, obedience and love. What can I do for God today? What sacrifice can I
offer that will be pleasing to him? Once I decide on it, I will carry it out with no one else
Conversation with Christ:
Jesus, give me the grace to begin this Lent
enthusiasm and love. Help me live it with joy, knowing
that I am
living it in your presence to please you and you alone.
make a Lenten program of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
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