Wednesday 24 December 2014

Friday of the 1st Week of Lent

Each and every one of us have been given different choices throughout our lives. Ultimately, we are responsible and accountable for the choices we make. This also includes the choices we make on how we wish to live. We can choose to live as good Christians, observing humbly, consistently and joyfully God's command to love God and neighbour; or we can choose to live a worldly life, caring only for oneself and living a life away from God's loving care. Whatever the choice we make, we should be aware of the consequences and be prepared to face them.

One choice we make is mentioned in today's reading. In the reading, we choose whether we wish to be a wicked man or an upright man. It may seem obvious that most of us would want to be an upright man, but the reality is that there are people who think that they are upright but from their attitude, behaviour and actions, they are actually leaning more towards being wicked. How so? The reading tells us how a wicked man would live: "If the wicked man renounces all the sins he has committed, respects my laws and is law-abiding and honest, he will certainly live; he will not die. All the sins he committed will be forgotten from then on; he shall live because of the integrity he has practised." The reading also tells us how an upright man would die: "But if the upright man renounces his integrity, commits sin, copies the wicked man and practises every kind of filth, is he to live? All the integrity he has practised shall be forgotten from then on; but this is because he himself has broken faith and committed sin, and for this he shall die."

Ultimately, as the reading reminds us: "When the upright man renounces his integrity to commit sin and dies because of this, he dies because of the evil that he himself has committed. When the sinner renounces sin to become law-abiding and honest, he deserves to live. He has chosen to renounce all his previous sins; he shall certainly live; he shall not die." The question we need to ask ourselves is this: we call ourselves upright and we believe that we are so, but are we truly and consistently living an upright life? Let us be honest with ourselves and discover where we stand, so that we can do what is necessary and return to the Lord's ways, and live, not die.

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