Monday of the 5th Week of Lent
“I am the light of the world; anyone who follows me will not be walking in the dark; he will have the light of life.”
The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Fresh and green are the pastures where he gives me repose.
Near restful waters he leads me, to revive my drooping spirit.
He guides me along the right path; he is true to his name.
If I should walk in the valley of darkness, no evil would I fear.
You are there with your crook and your staff; with these you give me comfort.
You have prepared a banquet for me in the sight of my foes.
My head you have anointed with oil; my cup is overflowing.
Surely goodness and kindness shall follow me all the days of my life.
In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for ever and ever.
I have always loved this Psalm; this is the Responsorial Psalm for today’s readings. The words may be different depending on the version or translation of the bible used, but the meaning is the same. We do not have to fear if we walk with our Lord.
Life has many demands, challenges, anxieties for us all. Sometimes we can coast through them, sometimes they make us pause a little, and then sometimes, they cause us to stumble and stop in confusion. In the midst of uncertainty, unrest, turmoil in various parts of the world and perhaps in our lives, Psalm 23 is like a breath of fresh air and a dose of healthy vitamins.
Often in my life, when things have seemed bleak or when I am at a crossroads and confused which road to take, the thought of Jesus by my side — leading me, sustaining me for the journey ahead — is so uplifting. It actually gives me the strength to carry on.
This journey we are on, it is a spiritual journey at its core. We are trying to make our way home, where our Heavenly Father is. On this journey, we travel through terrain that is full of hills and valleys, a spiritual battle. If we don’t move forward, we will slide back. But we are not alone on this journey. As the Psalm says, the Lord guides, comforts and protects me.
Even now, I stumble and fall, and sometimes, am tempted to give up. But the beauty of our Lord is His love and mercy. He stands there, ever waiting for me to get up and catch up. When I am in the Adoration Chapel, in His presence, there is a sense of peace that I cannot describe. It is a peace that this world really can’t provide with all the noise and confusion.
Perhaps you are one who has a fully organised life and nothing confounds you much. But we all need a friend who is on speed dial that we can call upon to support us, to hear us, to laugh with us and to cry with us. I found Him in Jesus — who is merciful, loving and righteous. He lights my path so I can see.
During this Lenten season, I pray for you, brothers and sisters in Christ, that you may experience the love that God has for you. May you understand how deeply He cares for you, yearn to have a sincere relationship with you and to spend eternity with you. All you have to do is to turn around and look at Him. He is waiting for you.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Winnie Kung)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, help us to understand the depth of Your love and mercy. To trust you completely, without reservation. Help us to seek You first and to turn to You in love and worship.
Thanksgiving: Dearest Lord, You are the guiding light. For You are my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. Thank you for illuminating our darkness, for lighting our way and most importantly, for Your companionship along this journey.