Ash Friday : The Story Of Exodus

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Ash Wednesday begins our journey through lent which mirrors the journey detailed in the book of Exodus. In that book the people of Israel are lead out of slavery under Egypt, into the desert for 40 years, we are being lead out of slavery under sin, into Lent for 40 days. They pass through Mt. Sinai, where they receive the law of God - the 10 Commandments, we through Mt. Calvary, where we receive the law of the Cross. They were nourished in their journey by manna, quail, and water from a Rock, We by almsgiving, fasting, and prayer. They were lead by a pillar of fire by night and a cloud by day, we are lead by the Holy Spirit - convicting us of our sins unto repentance. Finally they reach the promised land of Canaan, where they can worship …show more content…

Our nouishment in this desert.

Prayer is the beginning and foundation of this journey, through which we come to know our Deliverer, through whom we know ourselves. Let the prayer of the Church and personal devotion stir the soil of the soul, so that the seeds of grace take root deep within, assuring plentiful fruit flowing from your baptismal faith. Through this relationship with Christ, we will be able to notice the weeds of greed sown by the world that need unrooted. Prayer is the means by which we are taken out of the culture of sinful worldliness toward the culture of the baptized. Prayer harvests faith that the unseen God will bring to completion the work He has began in you, which in turn helps us to be in the world, but not of it. From this foundation of faith, nourished by prayer, we leave the iniquitous and sinful culture of the world, to live out our baptism.

Fasting, the second lenten penitential practice, is recognition that, in this desert journey, food, water, and other material goods must be rationed, for the sake of a higher good - self mastery and holiness. The whips of our slave masters (our various vices), have left wounds that may be infected (inclinations, tendencies, and dispositions toward sins of the flesh). Fasting is the healing salve that heals these wounds, and aids in freeing us from vice. Fasting builds our hope in the triumph over our vices, and looks forward to the day when we will be in the

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