Isaiah 55: 10 – 11
Matthew 6: 7 – 15


With Mind and Heart Renewed

As we begin our Lenten journey, my mind goes to a little booklet on Lenten reflections by Fr Gregory Manly CP called “With Mind and Heart Renewed.”

Later I discovered that this title is taken from the 1st Preface of Lent, which says

(speaking to God):- “Each year you give us this joyful season when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed.” (older translation)

This, it seems to me, helps us see the hoped-for outcome of our Lenten journey – that through this Lent, we may come to share more deeply in the saving mystery of the Death and Resurrection of our Lord – ‘with mind and heart renewed’.

Today, we hear the reading from Isaiah which teaches us that God is even now renewing us by the power of his Creative Word. May I listen attentively to that Word now and each day in Lent.

Then Jesus draws us close and teaches us How to Pray – note, not so much a prayer, as a Way to Pray -We are in the orbit of Jesus as Jesus is in the orbit of his Father. Such is the power of God’s Word!

So when we pray . . . . we pray with the Lord Jesus in the Holy Spirit.

We are not to use many words . . just a few words meant deeply and sincerely are enough.

We say “Our Father !”  with Jesus, and we pray to ‘his Abba’, his big Daddy!

We are united in the Kingdom of Jesus – in the brotherhood and the sisterhood of the new humanity! We pray as a family.

We are to pray firstly with praise to God –  as the first part of the prayer seeks to pursue God’s greater glory. We can continue to do that as each of us knows how  . . .      Then we pray for our human needs . . . . . our daily bread  – not just for myself, but for all the hungry in the world. For the safety and welfare of my family members.

I pray for the forgiveness of my sins, as I also must forgive those who have hurt me.

In this way, God’s Word rolls around in my mind and heart and creates something new and beautiful. As Jesus does for us all! As we journey towards his Paschal Mystery – the mystery of his Death and Resurrection.

Let us pray for each other in our time of Lent that we may come to be united with Jesus with mind and heart renewed.

Pat McIndoe CP, a Passionist at St. Gabriel’s Retreat, Boroko, Port Moresby