Saturday of the First Week of Lent
Reading 1 Dt 26:16-19
Moses spoke to the people, saying: "This day the LORD, your God, commands you to observe these statutes and decrees. Be careful, then, to observe them with all your heart and with all your soul. Today you are making this agreement with the LORD: he is to be your God and you are to walk in his ways and observe his statutes, commandments and decrees, and to hearken to his voice. And today the LORD is making this agreement with you: you are to be a people peculiarly his own, as he promised you; and provided you keep all his commandments, he will then raise you high in praise and renown and glory above all other nations he has made, and you will be a people sacred to the LORD, your God, as he promised."
Back in the early 90s I was speaking with a Jewish co-worker, Lynn, and while I can't remember the topic of discussion I do remember her expression when she said "but remember we are the "Chosen People". There was neither arrogance, nor presumption in it just pride and confidence that comes rooted in their understanding of covenant.
It was exactly that covenant that Moses was addressing to his people as they neared the Promised Land: "Today you are making this agreement with the LORD...And today the LORD is making this agreement with you..."
Yes Lynn walked as a covenant person. What of us then? At every Mass we hear these words taken from the New Testament:
26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, “Take and eat; this is my body.” 27 Then he took a cup, gave thanks,* and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you, 28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins."
We are a covenant people the words of Moses apply as much to us: ""Today you are making this agreement with the LORD...And today the LORD is making this agreement with you..." we respond "amen".
Another good friend of mine named St. Peter likes to remind me:
"But you are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may announce the praises” of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." (1 Pet 2:9)
Lent calls us to live as such. Peace.
The Season of Lent is a special time for us to slow down, look inward and make the necessary changes to truly become an Easter people.