Monday, March 22, 2010

New Beginnings

Women of Faith:
Spring—A Time of New Beginnings.

Welcome to some “new” friends, may this mark a new beginning in your continued search for the truth on your spiritual journey. For all of us maybe this is a good time to share this meditation with a sister in faith so that they too may have a new beginning.

This has been a week of new beginnings, our new granddaughter, Karolina, born March 9, 7 lbs; a new stage in Kristy’s relationship with Tyler, yes, he became her fiancé on the ski slopes of Beaver Creek, CO; and with the loss of a special faith friend, Faye, a new life with God, ready to be a new guardian angel in heaven. All of these are cause for celebration, because the Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy. Ps 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6

One of the greatest hopes I find in my relationship with God, is found in today’s reading from Jn 8:1-11 when Jesus forgave the adultress, after allowing the Pharisees, who wanted to condemn her, the choice, that they could stone her, if, they themselves were without sin.

So many times am I like the Pharisees ready to “cast stones,” only to realize that I too am a sinner and my sin is no less than any other. I got good advice today, that when I have the inclination to “judge” I should instead PRAY. Pray for those who might not be tithing, Pray for those who I think are acting selfishly, Pray for those who can’t or won’t listen to or seek the truth, Pray for those who are less than faithful to their spouse, Pray for those who are hurting those who love them, Pray, Pray, Pray.

I have hope from this reading, though, because knowing I am a sinner, I also know I will be forgiven, just like the adultress was forgiven. No sin is too great for God’s forgiveness. And as Joe said today, not only must I forgive others, but I must forgive myself. That is the greatness of a new beginning, to be able to start over, and follow Jesus’ advice to the adultress to “Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.”

I must Pray for my own change, to be given strength and grace to help me when I am inclined to gossip or judge, to be more compassionate to other people’s needs and choices. There is no way I can be in another person’s circumstance. As much as I try, I cannot completely walk in someone else’s shoes and see why they make the choices they make.

Spring and lent are a time to begin anew. Our slates can be wiped clean. Our past sins, our faults, can be changed. We can be converted, like Paul who persecuted the Romans and became one of the main writers of the bible, suffering in jail because he followed Christ.

Regardless of whether a fault is personal (like not taking care of our bodies, by overeating(gluttony) and/or not exercising); against another (like envy, greed or jealousy); or against God by not putting Him first in the choices we make (like not taking time to pray each day, failing to attend church, or by ignoring the church teachings to fit my needs so that I can accept something that society has legalized, like abortion, gay marriage, or other relationships outside of sacramental marriage). For any of these sins we can be forgiven, we can begin anew, we can change our thoughts, ask forgiveness, or maybe even change courses in our decisions and thoughts, if we ask for God’s help. It is never too late for a new beginning. For with God, all things are possible.

Dear God: You have done great things for me, I am filled with joy. Please forgive me when I judge the faith and actions of others, I cannot know their hearts. Thank you for all the gifts you have given me, especially for a loving family who depends on your guidance and is continually seeking your wisdom and grace. Help me to forgive myself and others, to not look back, but to go forward and to know your grace to help me “sin no more.” Help me to accept my sufferings, and to not let them lead me to sin. Thank you for giving us your son, Jesus, to show us how to suffer and how to forgive. Amen.

And if anyone can’t find natures “new spring beginnings” I invite you out to see my crocuses that are blooming, and 2 new puppies—don’t know how long that combination is going to last :)


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