As I sat down to prepare this Monday morning's meditation, I noticed that I have not posted anything since last Monday in spite of having a computer at my beck and call now. There was, however, a small inconvenience that has made posting difficult: I fell at work (four-point splat in front of a couple dozen people) and injured my dominant hand. At first, it appeared to be broken, but the x-rays showed that not to be the case. It was just a really bad contusion, but it made my hand swell up beyond usefulness, accompanied by no strength that sidelined me and made me another workers' comp statistic. (The safety officer was among the witnesses.) It is still difficult to type, but this, too, shall pass. As for the Bible, I continued to read the Book of Jeremiah.
This week I spent time reading through the messages of Jeremiah 3. What stood out for me was the passage in which God says that He will not be angry with Israel (or, by analogy, with us) forever. All Israel has to do is confess her guilt for "I am faithful."
Reading: Jeremiah 3: 11-13.
Meditation: The first thing that came to my mind in reading this passage is the wonderful sacrament of reconciliation that I discovered in coming to faith and becoming Catholic. Of course, we can all repent and tell God directly that we are sorry for our unfaithfulness to Him. There is something seemingly more solemn and sacred when sharing the nature of the unfaithfulness with a servant of God, one of His priests. There is also the added benefit of getting some additional insight into the situations of our daily life that lead us astray. As many fellow penitents have said to me as we have stood in line, waiting our turn for confession, "This is the best therapy in the world -- and, to think, it is free!"
Our mission will be offering bilingual a reconciliation service tonight. As in past years, I anticipate that there will be only a few dozen of us there. There are many reasons that people offer for not taking advantage of the opportunity our parish gives us (among those being, of course, regular reconciliation hours during the week are also available). I am grateful that the parish continues to offer these services at Christmas and Easter (as well as weekly) in spite of low attendance for I want to do as God has asked: confess my guilt. Certainly, I am not without guilt as much as I would like to be guiltless.
Contemplation: That is far as I can go with you this Monday morning. I now retire to private prayer to prepare for reconciliation tonight. Then I will move on to contemplation, my favorite part of the day, letting God take over the direction in which my relationship with Him moves.
I will leave you now to your prayer and contemplation. First, though, I would like to bring to your attention a Monday morning prayer post that you might enjoy:
Fr. Austin Fleming, priest of the Archdiocese of Boston and pastor in Concord, Massachusetts, posts a prayer each Monday morning that he calls "Monday Morning Offering." I enjoy his prayers very much. I think you also will find them inspirational. He has graciously given me permission to include a link to his blog on my Monday Morning Meditation posts. (During the week, he also posts great homilies and other thoughtful discussions. I enjoy reading those, too, as do readers of this blog who have taken the stroll over to his blog.)
For additional inspiration throughout the week, I would point out two sets of blogs: (1) the list of devotional blogs on my sidebar and (2) my blogroll, where I am following a number of inspirational priests and writers about spiritual matters. I learn so very much from all these people. I highly recommend them to you.