“Your Father knows what you need even before you ask him” - Matthew 6:8
“So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear?’ All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides.” - Matthew 6:31-3
Struggle. Doubt. Anxiety. Fear.
As I head into my second week of Lent, these are some of the many emotions and experiences that I find my heart confronted with. Eight months into moving into the DC area, I have found that changes have pulled the rug of comfort from underneath me. I am the worst with changes, and within one year, God has had me move between two very different cities, and it has brought its fair share wrestling with the Lord interiorly.
These words of the Gospel resonate deeply with my walk with the Lord, but they are also words of confrontation to my heart that I often don’t want to receive. They are comforting and consoling words, and yet, I find them hard to grasp and live from.
These words, if true, change life dramatically. While our lives may look the same as others externally, following Christ means that it is quite different from those around us, mainly because of one thing. We are called to total abandonment and surrender. When confronted with uncertainty and worry, one thing matters: I am a daughter.
The Spirit drove Jesus into the desert after his Baptism. Right after his claiming of identity as the Father’s Son, He entered to a place of trial. The desert, while a place of aridity and isolation, was also a place of fruitfulness where He was called to live from his identity.
When Jesus was going to the desert to be tempted there were probably many voices striving to be heard: the voice of the enemy challenging Jesus, the voice of humanity trying to avoid suffering and trial, or even the voices of others appealing to ways other than the way of God. But no matter what, Jesus listened for the voice of His Father.
Amidst the cacophony of confrontation, blame, and judgment, Jesus remained firm. He was a Son. When confronted with the cross, Jesus prayed, “not my will, but yours be done”(Luke 22:42).
Struggles and trials, while we may feel their pain and struggle, are nothing compared to this love. “What can separate us from the love of God?” St. Paul writes. These words apply to Christ’s death and resurrection… And they still apply to our lives today.
Sister, where do you resonate with this? Life has its constant changes, moments of loss and trial, and moments when we are confronted with our utter powerlessness in the face of life. In the face of evil or pain, there is a call for you.
The Lord claims you as daughter. Will you embrace this and draw ever closer to Him in the uncertainty? Will you listen for His voice amidst the many other voices which speak lies to the heart?
As we lean into the first full week of lent, let us embrace this time of purification. When confronted with goods that we are fasting from for a time, let us lean on him in our desire for satisfaction to the thirst in our hearts. He is enough. (2 Cor 12:9)