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Rector’s Message

Dear People of God,

Our Lenten journey continues and we are two weeks away from the start of Holy Week!

As our Season of Lent moves into the last couple of weeks, it is important to take an inventory of our Lenten journey at this point. Lent is both a time of giving up and an opportunity for giving. At the same time, we can place a positive spin on this Holy Season and filter life through a different lens—through the eyes of Christ. I share with you the following story as an opportunity to view Lent through the lens of Jesus.

How to Dance in the Rain

It was busy morning, about 8:30, when an elderly gentleman in his 80’s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He said he was in a hurry as he had an appointment at 9 a.m. I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would be able to see him. I saw him looking at his watch and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound. On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors and got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound. While taking care of his wound, I asked him if he had another doctor’s appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry. The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I inquired as to her health. He told me that she had been there awhile and that she had Alzheimer’s Disease. As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not recognized him in five years now. I was surprised, and asked him, “And you still go every morning, even though she doesn’t know who you are?” He smiled as he patted my hand and said, “She doesn’t know me, but I still know who she is.” I had to hold back tears as he left. I had goose bumps on my arm and thought, “That is the kind of love I want in my life.”

True love is neither physical nor romantic. True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be and will not be. The happiest people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything they have.

Life isn’t about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.

Lent isn’t about how to survive the Season, but how to Dance to Easter Joy!

And may I close today’s column with a prayer given to me which I share with you this Lenten Season!

 

Dear Lord,

I thank you for this day. I thank you for my being able to see and to hear this morning. I’m blessed because you are a  forgiving God and an understanding God. You have done so much for me and you keep on blessing me. Forgive me this day for everything I have done, said or thought that was not pleasing to you. I ask now for your forgiveness. Please keep me safe from all danger and harm. Help me to start this day with a new attitude and plenty of gratitude.

Let me not whine and whimper over things I have no control over. Let me continue to see sin through God’s eyes and acknowledge it as evil. And when I sin, let me repent, and confess with my mouth my wrongdoing, and receive the forgiveness of God. May I learn to forgive myself.

And when this world closes in on me, let me remember Jesus’ example—to slip away and find a quiet place to pray. It’s the best response when I’m pushed beyond my limits. I know that when I can’t pray, you listen to my heart. Continue to use me to do your will.

Continue to bless me that I may be a blessing to others. Keep me strong that I may help the weak. Keep me uplifted that I may have words of encouragement for others. I pray for those who are lost and can’t find their way. I pray for those who are misjudged and misunderstood. I pray for those who don’t know you intimately. I pray for those who don’t believe. I pray that every eye that reads this knows there is not problem, circumstance, or situation greater than God.

This is my prayer. Amen.

On the Lenten road with you,

Fr. Greg