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Day Twenty-Nine of Lent – Jesus is Lifted Up on the Cross

Day Twenty-Nine of Lent
Jesus is Lifted Up on the Cross

“Now is the time of judgment on this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.” He said this indicating the kind of death he would die. –  John 12:31-32

Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled. He was lifted up on the Cross for all to see. Among those seeing this horrific sight was His own dear mother.

Mother Mary heard this prophecy spoken by Jesus during His public ministry. She pondered His words over the years just as she had pondered the words spoken by Simeon when she and Saint Joseph presented Jesus in the temple, “And you yourself a sword will pierce so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Luke 2:35).

Mother Mary’s Immaculate Heart was now fully pierced as she gazed at her Son, lifted up on the Cross for all to see. And though this sight caused deep sorrow and pain, our Blessed Mother saw the blessing of her Son being lifted up as she pondered His own words. “Now the ruler of this world will be driven out. And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.”

Though painful to see, our Blessed Mother knew that her Son’s Crucifixion was accomplishing the greatest good ever known. She knew that He had suddenly destroyed the “ruler of this world” and had driven him out from the hearts of those who turned to the Cross. She knew that her Son’s Cross would draw many to Heaven and free them from eternal death. Mother Mary herself was the first to be drawn to her Son’s Cross and to be bathed in the grace of His unending mercy.

Have you allowed the power of the Cross to transform your own life? Have you joined our Blessed Mother as she stood before the Cross with her eyes fixed in love at the image of her salvation? Have you allowed the power of the Cross to drive out the ruler of this world from your own heart? Have you allowed Jesus’ Cross to draw you to Himself and to the Father?

Reflect, today, upon these questions as you reflect upon your Lord being lifted up upon the Holy Cross. See Him hanging there and know that this is the image of your own salvation. Allow yourself to be drawn to Him and allow His Precious Blood to cover you, driving the evil one and all sin from your life. Reflect, ponder, be open and receive. The Lord was lifted up for you. Allow the power of the Cross to change your life.


My dearest Mother, though you gazed at the horrific sight of your Son’s brutal Crucifixion, you remembered the words He spoke in which He revealed the power of His sacrifice. You were aware of the deep truth that His Cross was destroying the evil one and all sin, and that all who gazed upon your Son in faith with you would be drawn to the glory of Heaven.

Pray for me, dear Mother, that I may be one of those who stand with you in the shadow of the Cross. Help me to be strengthened by your witness. Point me always to your Son so that I may receive the abundance of grace poured out on Calvary.

My crucified Lord, I thank You for the unfathomable gift of the Cross. Draw me in, dear Lord, and sanctify me by Your perfect sacrifice of love. Heal me, renew me, give me new life and drive all sin from my life. I thank You Lord for all You have done.

40 Days Journey with Our Lord
Day Twenty-Nine: Gluttony or Self-Control?

Physical gluttony is a disordered desire for food or alcohol. Once an appetite has experienced indulgence, momentary satisfaction quickly fades, leaving one desiring satiation once again. Excessive eating and drinking provide a quick fix to restlessness but ultimately create greater restlessness. Gluttony is often a symptom of deeper spiritual or emotional struggles. It might result from a search for peace, an attempt to fill an interior void, or a general lack of fulfillment in life. It’s important to look into your specific situation to discern why you struggle with this sin.

Gluttony leads to negative effects: it dulls the mind, weakens the will, reduces joy, causes frustration, diminishes concern for personal health, and leaves a persistent feeling of dissatisfaction. In contrast, exercising self-control has numerous positive effects: it sharpens the mind, bolsters the will, and infuses both with renewed energy. It brings joy through the freedom gained from overcoming the vice of gluttony. Moreover, when we practice moderation, eating and drinking become more enjoyable and satisfying. The benefits of improved physical health due to self-control also enhance our spiritual and emotional well-being.

In addition to physical gluttony, spiritual gluttony can affect those who are steadily advancing in the spiritual life and experience great closeness to God. When spiritual sweetness is discovered in meditation and apostolic work, it is easy to take more delight in the good spiritual feelings than in the humble and faithful service of God’s will, especially when God’s will requires sacrifice.

When spiritual sweetness is not found, the temptation might be to try some new devotion or begin some new apostolate in the hope that the spiritual sweetness returns. When it doesn’t, frustration and confusion can set in. God, however, is often the source of spiritual dryness, which He uses to draw His faithful servants into greater conformity to His will. Doing God’s will is more grounded in sacrificial love than is spiritual busy-ness and will result in a spiritual satisfaction far beyond good spiritual feelings.

Recall that from the Cross, Jesus recited Psalm 22 when He cried out, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). One reason Jesus permitted Himself to experience a complete loss of His Father’s presence within His human soul was to reveal to us that we ought not rely upon spiritual feelings to direct our lives.

Despite the immense spiritual dryness Jesus experienced on the Cross, He fulfilled the Father’s will with determination, doing what was right, despite how He felt. This is the perfect cure for gluttony in all forms. If we can persevere through every dryness, empty feeling, loss of consolation, and do what we ought, we will discover Jesus’ strength to persevere through anything. Our faith will be purified, and we will allow God more control over our lives.

Ponder any ways you struggle with gluttony. Then turn your mind to Jesus’ cry from the Cross. His act was a mixture of the greatest love ever shown and the greatest interior suffering ever felt. This profound mystery of the Cross must direct our lives so that we can share in His act of sacrificial love, freed from every indulgence, so that God’s grace will shine through us in ways we can’t imagine.


My sacrificial Lord, Your love was profound beyond comprehension. You permitted Yourself to endure emptiness and interior pain so that by Your free act of the will, You could bestow upon us an act of pure love. Free me from all attempts to indulge myself so that my faith will be strong and my love pure.

Mother Mary, pray for me. Jesus, I trust in You.

Source: mycatholiclife

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