Lenten Offering: Week 7
Welcome to the final week of WINE’s Lenten Offering—our offering to the Lord of time and listening hearts.
I don’t know about you, but as we enter Holy Week, I feel parched. In the Palm Sunday readings we heard the entire Passion, and we entered into Christ’s desolation in our Psalm Response: “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” We’ve been fasting on and off ever since Ash Wednesday, but our 40 days of self-denial are nothing compared to what Jesus endured on Good Friday for our sake.
“I’m thirsty!” he cried from the cross.
Blessed Mother Teresa had a beautiful insight about that plea:
At this most difficult time He proclaimed, ‘I thirst.’ And people thought He was thirsty in an ordinary way and they gave Him vinegar straight away; but it was not for that thirst; it was for our love, our affection, that intimate attachment to Him, and that sharing of His passion. He used, ‘I thirst,’ instead of ‘Give Me your love’… ‘I thirst.’ Let us hear Him saying it to me and saying it to you.
—Mother Teresa’s Secret Fire, 281-2.
“God thirsts that we may thirst for him,” the Catechism tells us in no. 2560. He seeks us out, asks us for a drink, so that we might come to know, in our thirst, his gift of living water.
The final Penitential Psalm, Psalm 143, takes us to that point of prayer where our thirst meets his:
my soul thirsts for thee like a parched land. Make haste to answer me, O Lord! (vss. 6-7)
Allow your meditation this week to draw you into Holy Week and help you enter the Passion. Take your thirst and longing to the cross. The Resurrection is around the corner!
PS: Please consider continuing this journey of praying with Scripture beyond Easter. The Lord longs to speak to you in his Word! If you’re not sure what to do next, see the suggestions in the last chapter of your Create in Me a Clean Heart journal.
Questions to Ponder:
As a community of women, sharing a similar journey this Lent, we invite you to share your experiences and insights with each other on the blog (below) after you complete your prayer with Psalm 143. Here are some questions, based on the journaling questions in Create in Me a Clean Heart.
- [READ] What struck you about Psalm 143? Did any words or phrases catch your eye? What did you notice about them?
- [REFLECT] What did Psalm 143 say to you? Where did your heart draw you? After pondering that passage—what does it mean to you?
- [RESPOND and REST] Were you able to move into a conversation with the Lord? The specific things that He says to our hearts, and our response, are often private. Would you like to share anything about the experience of hearing from Him, or entering into that conversation, or resting in his presence?
Written by Sarah Christmyer
Sarah Christmyer is a Catholic author, Bible teacher, and speaker with a special love for lectio divina and journaling as ways to draw close to Christ in Scripture. She is co-developer with Jeff Cavins of The Great Adventure Catholic Bible study program and author or co-author of many of the studies. Sarah is an adjunct faculty member at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia, where she teaches Scripture to men in their Spiritual Year. Sarah also blogs at her website, www.ComeIntotheWord.com.