Dear People of God.
The season of Lent has been begun already. Today is first Sunday of Lent. The readings of this Sunday are inviting us to renew our covenant with God.
Our first reading recounts the unconditional covenant between God and Noah who represents humanity. This is a covenant of renewal, recreation and restoration. This covenant was sealed with a rainbow as a sign of God’s faithfulness. One interesting thing about this covenant is that we share in it. God has been faithful to this covenant, to the extent of offering his own son Jesus Christ in order to renew it. Unfortunately, humanity has been unfaithful to God and his covenant. Therefore, this season, God offers us another opportunity to renew our covenant with him through Christ.
In the second reading, Peter reminds us of God’s New Covenant with us through Christ. our Christ renewed and strengthened the covenant with his own blood. He did this by opening the spring of baptism through which we were purified and restored to God. This is the renewal of the covenant on God’s Part. Hence, all of us who were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ have taken part in this new covenant. Each year, our Mother Church provides us a new opportunity through the period of Lent to reflect upon this covenant. She also gives us the opportunity to renew our commitment to it. Hence, Paul reminds us that: “Now is the favorable time; the day of salvation” (2 Cor 6, 2).
Our gospel from Mark narrates the temptation of Jesus, and the sacrifice he made in order to prepare himself for his mission and journey. To be a worthy lamb for the renewal of God’s covenant with his people, Jesus had to be tested. Peter states this clearly: “As gold is tested by fire so shall your faith be (1 Pt 1, 7). Therefore, today’s gospel reminds us that, as Christ was tested, so shall we all be tested. Every day of our lives, the devil tempts us, and he will continue doing so. However, this should not frighten us, because the Holy Spirit that helped Christ is always available to help us. It is also a reminder, that temptation is inevitable in our Christian journey. As we prepare to renew our covenant with God, just like Christ, we must persist in prayer, fast and abstinence. We must ask God to grant us the strength to endure till the end of our own test as Christ did. Also, we must ask the Holy Spirit to fill us with humility, courage, and patience this season.
Finally, let us sincerely make use of this period of Lent to ask God for forgiveness for all the moments we have not been faithful to our covenant with him.
Have a Happy and Blessed Sunday!
Yours In Christ,