Breaking up is hard to do.
What's the defective premise of life in this world? It's the assumption that this world, as it is, IS essentially ALL there is. There are at least shades of this assumption in all of us. (You could say that it underlies the single largest voting block that exists.) How could it be otherwise? This is the only world we appear to have. It makes sense to love it and cling to it. We are in it, so to some extent we are OF it.
Jesus, however, is the world's great rival. While acknowledging the good, as only the Creator can, He reaffirms that the fallen world is NOT everything. So, He is the rival of that part of ourselves that is OF the world—meaning that part of ourselves that rivals Him.
What's the effective premise of Lent? It's the assumption that we have sided with Jesus against that part of ourselves that rivals Him, that worldly part, and that we need to reaffirm that HE is everything. What makes that difficult is that we have to confront this rival love—and, of course, we must renounce it.
It's time to fall out of love with the world—again.
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Posted by: AgnesDay -
Feb. 24, 2012 12:20 PM ET USA
What a brief and beautiful explanation of mortification! We need that "Like" button so it can go to my Facebook wall.
Posted by: Cornelius -
Feb. 22, 2012 10:42 AM ET USA
This may be the best Lenten reflection I've read, and really makes sense of our mortification practices during Lent. I've taken the liberty of sending it around to a number of Catholic friends who are uncertain why we mortify during Lent.