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Repentance for Lentance…

February 20, 2007

It’s the day before lent, and I am forcing myself to bend my mind to repentance.

I must admit that repentance has a negative connotation for me, similar to righteousness – it always feels false and inflated to me, but, after doing some digging, I think that’s just the way it was presented to me, rather than what it really is. Repentance isn’t a sentence – it’s a gift of sorts. A gift from God to return – to change and embrace and move away from sin and toward God’s love and light.

Repentance has historically dragged up an image in my mind of someone who is woefully a sinner: dirty, tattered, broken. Perhaps this is how our souls look to the Lord, as he sees us bumbling around like a cloud of gnats – rushing to and fro and often seeming generally directionless and purposeless. This image makes me feel helpless to truly repent – the general damage in my soul seems irredeemable at times.

Of course, this vantage totally negates that the choice to forgive is not mine, but God’s alone. I am not to be my own judge. It is only my job to turn, time and time again to God, to turn toward the gift of his loving grace, with my arms outstretched.

Am I shallow and full of myself and my own ideas, lording them over people and waving them in front of God – “See…look, look at me! I’m the good student, the good girl, the smart one!”? Yes, I am guilty of this, often.

Only, I don’t think God cares about that all that outward “goodness”. He wants to know what it is that I am willing to “do”, not just what I am willing to “be”. He calls me to turn – to return, to change and experience his love through Grace.

I found this reflection quite helpful. I hope you can read it and enjoy it as much as I did. Good sustenance for the soul is found here.

From the web page for The Diocese of Waterford and Lismore

Reflections – Repentance & Healing

For those who have lost their way, O Lord, I pray.
Bring them your light and help, each and every day.
Guide those in doubt or who in any way may stray.
Lord Jesus, come and take away their pain,
And help them find meaning in life once again.

For those who have lost their way

God, I hear you calling. Perhaps, I have failed you, yet you have never failed me. Perhaps, I have betrayed you, yet you have never betrayed me. I am a sinner but you are always here, always leading me, leading me into righteousness; encompassing me into your strength, reluctant to let me go, striving to change me and protecting me from danger.

As I tread onto new paths
light the dark corners for me, Lord.
Open my eyes to your glories,
so that I may not stumble down the wrong road.
Help me to bear my burden humbly –
All in honour of you – and that
others may see if they live humbly.
Then, we can tread the same path as you.

My Lord above, who looks down and cares
for us your chosen people.
We may have sinned and turned to evil
But, through your love we have been guided back.
I mention this, Lord Jesus, so that you may at all times
take care of us and keep us on the right track.

Jesus, inspire me and help me to stay on the right path.

Teach me to say amen and to accept everything you have given me.
Teach me to love others when I find it hard to love them.
Teach me to help others who are not as blessed as I am,
And those who find normal everyday living a struggle.

Lord, teach me to say thank you, thank you for the life you have given me,
And may I never be tempted to remove others or myself from this world.
Lord, above all, I pray for your guidance in this world.
Forgive us our sins and help us to live as your Son Jesus Christ asked us to do.

Help us, Lord, to walk with you always.
Give us the courage to keep your commandments.
Help us to overcome our weaknesses and temptations,
So that we may spread love, harmony and peace.
May we recognise that your way is the true way to happiness.

May we each day be inspired to find the right path. Blessings.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Eileen permalink
    February 21, 2007 6:12 am

    I know what you mean Ann!

    Let’s do as Pisco suggests and pray to God that those with whom we are angry get exactly what they deserve.

    God will know what that is, and give it to them.

    As you reap, so shall you sow, right?

    I have to say, though, that my heart feels very heavy with all this post-Lambeth stuff and non-sense. Feh.

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