1st Week of Lent (A) : Wednesday 1st March 2023

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Lord, help me to forgive and pray for those who have wronged me

1st Week of Lent (A) : Wednesday 1st March 2023

Jona 3:1-10; Ps. 50:3-4,12-13,18-19;
Lk. 11:29-32 (Ps. Wk. I)

People and nations invest a lot of energy in hating their enemies – especially those who have done them great harm. The Israelites hated the Assyrians, giving Jonah special delight in preaching doom and destruction in the streets of their capital Nineveh. To his horror, they took his message to heart and repented. God decided not to destroy the city after all. This did not please Jonah at all, for he had his heart set on witnessing their destruction. This is further biblical proof that we must pray for our enemies and persecutors and wish blessings on them, rather than misery. This is not an option – it is the will of God. An enemy today can be a friend tomorrow. Jonah has another link with Jesus and the New Testament.

To the request of people for a sign, He would only grant one: the sign of Jonah. Jonah’s three days in the belly of the huge fish became a symbol of the three days that Jesus would spend in the realm of the dead before the Resurrection. The saving power of God in the raising of Jesus and in the new life we experience is the only sign we need. If Christ had not risen, then we have little hope. If He has risen, then everything is different, and our lives are charged with meaning, even as we face challenges and struggles.

Lord, help me to pray for those who have wronged me.

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