Third Sunday of Lent
by Fr. Ivan Olmo

“I, the LORD, am your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that place of slavery.”  Forgetfulness, like so many things we encounter and face throughout the day has some benefits but also through it, we encounter great losses and spiritual defeats.  The tempter and enemy of our human nature has mastered the use of forgetfulness and is quite cunning in the ways he causes us to forget God and to forget others.  He draws us back into the state of sinfulness to the point we want and desire to re-enter our own personal Egypt, that place of sinful slavery where we are enslaved and imprisoned by sin and do not recall or remember God has set us free.  The enemy distracts us through forgetfulness.  He floods us with thoughts of worry and concern.  He encourages us to forget God’s grace and the gift and power and the use of prayer.  The enemy incites us to defend ourselves, go at it alone, rely on our own strength, rather than to remember God is greater than any problem we face.  God is greater than all creation.  God is greater than all he creates.  God has already defeated the enemy, recall the Way of the Cross – the humility of God, his Passion, the suffering and death of his Son, the Resurrection; the waters of Baptism that set you free and gave you back your life.  The victory is God’s, the benefits and graces are yours.  In the Garden of Eden, the enemy began to interrogate Adam and Eve, questioning their recollection of what God said and the things he flat out forbade.  The questioning is a tactical use of forgetfulness causing them and us to forget God’s word, reinterpreting what God said for our own selfish use and selfish gain and drawing on our disordered intentions to be independent from God, equal to God, better than God. Oh, how we forget the One who created us in such beauty and goodness.  Oh, how we forget the One who provides for our daily sustenance and cares for our joy and brokenness.  Oh, how we forget the One who suffered and died that we may remember and live again. Jesus clearly says in scripture and in Mass, “do this in memory of me.”  He gives us the gift to remember no one has greater love than the One who calls us personally friend, died for our sinfulness, ransomed us and set us free.  God’s mercy forgives our sins. His love forgets them.  Remember; never forget.

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