On Ash Wednesday, the Gospel according to Matthew told us not to look gloomy when we fast. In today's first reading from the Prophet Isaiah and the Gospel of Matthew both remind us to look at fasting in a positive light. Mary Ellen reminded us in her reflection on Ash Wednesday of the words of Pope Francis on how we can approach fasting by doing something positive, something that helps others.
Isaiah (9:6-7) says:
"This, rather, is the fasting that I (the Lord) wish: releasing those bound unjustly ... setting free the oppressed ... sharing your bread with the hungry, sheltering the oppressed and the homeless; clothing the naked when you see them, and not turning your back on your own."
Too often we think of fasting in reference to giving up food, and that certainly is one element of fasting. But the hard part of fasting is to fast in such a way that we are fasting to follow Jesus, to do what Jesus wants us to do. This Lent may our fasting be such that we say no to ourselves and yes to opening our eyes to the needs of others.
on Friday, February 19 at 12:00AM