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Living the Way of Love: Week 1 – Lenten Reflection: The Path of Wholeness

“Living the Way of Love”
The Path of Wholeness
First Week of Lent 2019

By: Jeanne Connolly, Director of Charism and Mission

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13
…. When the devil had finished every temptation, he departed from him for a time.”  Luke 4: 1, 13

The first Sunday of Lent we heard Luke’s telling of the temptations of Jesus. Temptations are the desire to do something, especially something unwise or wrong.

Fr. Richard Rohr writes that the three temptations that Jesus faced “are all temptations to the misuse of power for purposes less than God’s purpose.”  Other authors have noted that the temptations could be named as seeking personal comfort, admiration, recognition, authority, control, and monetary wealth at the expense of others and/or our own integrity. The word integrity is derived from the Latin word integer meaning intact or whole. It is the state of being whole and undivided.

Rohr continues, “Most people’s daily ethical choices are not between total good and total evil, but between various shades of good, a partial good that is wrongly perceived as an absolute good (because of the self as the central reference point), or even evil that disguises itself as good.”

Author Brené Brown defines integrity as “Choosing courage over comfort; choosing what is right over what is fun, fast, and easy, and choosing to practice our values rather than simply professing them.”
That is the example that Jesus provides us in this Gospel. With each temptation that Jesus encountered, he refocused on God’s words and God’s purpose. He chose courage over comfort. He reminds us that God never chooses power over others, or admiration, or financial wealth.  As we journey through Lent, we are invited once again, to choose God’s purpose for our lives and to work together for the sake of our world. In our daily lives we are invited to make choices with integrity and to live the way of love with wholeness, authenticity, courage, and compassion. The path is before us … the choice is ours.

Merciful God be with me in times of trouble and want. Guide me on Your path of wholeness.

For Reflection/Journaling:  
I am most in need of courage when I am faced with ___________?
Do I intentionally pause and think before I speak, act, or make decisions so that my values are reflective and congruent with my professed values and beliefs?

Rohr, Richard; Wondrous Encounters: Scripture for Lent; St. Anthony Messenger Press. Kindle Edition; p.23-24
Rohr, Richard; IBID p. 24
Brown, Brené; Rising Strong: The Reckoning, the Rumble, the Revolution; ©2015, Spiegel & Grau, New York; p. 98

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