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Thursday, March 9, 2006

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St. Frances of Rome

Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
Psalm 138
Matthew 7:7-12

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fresh spring air

"If you, with all your sins, know how to give your children what is good, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to anyone who asks Him!" —Matthew 7:11

Lent means "springtime." As nature awakens from the dormancy of winter to the vitality of spring, so should our life in the Spirit break forth into new life. The Lord wants to give us a freshness and a newness in our relationship with Him. He wants to go on a "second honeymoon" with us and restore our early love (Rv 2:4). He desires to bring us back to the childlike awareness of His loving presence which we had when we first started to love Him.

To give us a spiritual springtime, the Lord may lead us through a time of crisis. Like Esther, we may be "seized with mortal anguish" and cry out to the Lord from the depths of our hearts (Est C:12). Or we may experience the Lord's glory and power through a conversion, deliverance, breakthrough, or healing in our lives. Then our relationship will be so refreshed that we will pray with childlike faith and simply ask and receive (Mt 7:7). We will no longer gasp for breath amid the secularistic pollution of doubt and confusion. We can take a deep breath for the first time in a long time and breathe in the fresh, warm air of a Lenten springtime.

Prayer:  "My Lord, our King, You alone are God. Help me, who am alone and have no help but You, for I am taking my life in my hand" (Est C:14-15).

Promise:  "Put in my mouth persuasive words in the presence of the lion." —Est C:24

Praise:  St. Frances of Rome was a noblewoman, wife, mother, and also served Jesus in the poor.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our Risen Life series of tapes starting with Meeting the Risen Christ, a set of seven audio tapes starting with AV 4A-1 or two set series of video tapes starting with V-4A.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 16, 2005

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