Welcome to the Wilderness

by Sr. Juliemarie Mcdonald, SND on 02/18/2018

in Lent

First Sunday of Lent–Cycle B
February 18, 2018

“He was in the wilderness…tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.”
(Mark 1:12-13)

Welcome to the Wilderness

Wilderness is a school for discernment.
In silence,
we silent our outer and inner voices
to welcome the voices of Spirit and Satan
to discern who masters us.

Wild beasts enter this battle by distracting us,
leading us away from the desert silence and discernment.
We welcome angels to comfort us and gently return us
to the real matter at hand—Who is my master?

I know we can’t rent or buy a camel and trot off to the desert!
During this Lent, what we can do is create a desert place,
a place where we can be alone.

(Once when I couldn’t find a space, I took a pillow and sat in a waterless tub.
In the bathroom I welcomed wilderness! You do what you have to do.)

Voices and noises from the TV, Radio, Computers, Chatter of co-workers,
or arguing family members
melt away like ice cycles flooded by sunshine.

Now back to that Lenten question—Who is my master?

For Reflection and Sharing:

  1. What are some bombardments of noise in your life?
  2. Where can you create a wilderness for deeper discernment?
  3. How might you steer clear of family squabbles at the dinner table?
  4. Why has your faithfulness to God grown cold since last Lent?
  5. Who might help you get back the fire that once flamed in your heart?
  6. When will you set aside some time to venture into the wilderness?

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