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2nd Week of Lent
I, the Lord, alone probe the mind and test the heart. (Jeremiah 17:10)
Jumping off the high dive or watching your child drive off by himself for the first time—events like these can be exhilarating and unnerving at the same time. The same can be said of the thought behind the above verse. It is exciting to learn that God knows what you mean, how you think, and what you truly intend, even when everyone else misunderstands you. He knows your difficulties and supports your efforts to love and serve him. But there’s also something unsettling in the way that God sees everything in your heart—even those things you want to hide forever. There’s no point in trying to fool the One who is all-knowing!
It’s good to know that when God probes us, he is more like a surgeon working with a scalpel than a lumberjack wielding a blunt ax. The light he shines on your life is as warm as the glow of the sun, not the cold glare of searchlights. Carefully, gently, he uncovers the thoughts and intentions of your heart. Skillfully he separates doubts and defenses, hopes and desires, purposes and attitudes. Even when he reveals something that needs to change, he is quick to assure you of his love and to remind you of all that is good in you. He doesn’t probe just to point out flaws; he does it so that he can bring you into a deeper relationship with him.
Lent is a good time to let the Lord probe your mind and test your heart. If the thought of doing that gives you pause or fills you with fear, take a minute and remind yourself who is doing the probing: the One who died to bring you eternal life. You are precious and honored in his eyes!
God is endlessly patient with us. He extends his forgiveness and grace in outrageous abundance. He is rich in truth, but also in love. So open your heart to him today. Sit quietly with him in prayer, and ponder a short Scripture passage, perhaps something from Mass that touches your heart. He will do the rest.
“Father, look into my heart today, examine my thoughts, and strengthen me in your love.”
Psalm 1:1-4, 6
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