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Grant to your people, Lord, grace to withstand the temptations of the world, the flesh, and the devil, and with pure hearts and minds to follow you, the only true God; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Look at the image, first getting a general sense of this scene.  What do you see or feel?  Then more deeply look at some specific portion that calls out to you. Are you challenged to find something specific?  Do you think that any of these items still have a use, or have they been discarded?  What would you like to change about this?

Reflect:  The collect today refers again to temptation, a common theme throughout Lent.  Our prayer asks the Divine One for the grace to withstand temptations.  There is no presumption that we can avoid temptations, which seem to be everywhere.  In the world, in the flesh and in the forces of evil.  Yet with God’s help, we can move beyond these temptations, which are no better than garbage or junk cluttering our lives.  When we let go of them, our hearts and minds become pure. Then we are able to follow the Divine will.

Act:  Identify something in your life that is cluttering your heart, taking up valuable space that could otherwise be a vessel of love and compassion.  Something of the world, the flesh, or some evil force that you need to stand up to. Name it.  Then pray for the grace of God that you may do so, and then move closer to the Divine One with a pure heart and mind.

Thanks for taking part in New and Contrite Hearts. Your comments are very welcome—let others know what you saw and experienced. Until next time, may you have a most blessed Lent.

Music: “Ambient Sonata”  /Album:  Ambient Sonata  /Artist: Dee Yan-Key

Image: Junk    /Place: Havana, Cuba   /Photographer: Jon Shematek