Thursday, March 5, 2009

Pleasing to God (Esther C:12,14-16)

"As a child I used to hear from the books of my forefathers that you, O LORD, always free those who are pleasing to you. Now help me, who am alone and have no one but you, O LORD, my God." How is Esther pleasing to God? She does not begin to list her virtues, nor her holy practices. Esther does not extol herself in any way. She is pleasing to God because she is alone and in her loneliness she calls upon Him. The product of sin is alienation. Sin isolates the human person. We feel alienated from God. We think that God is angry with us. Often this is because we are angry with ourselves. In sin we do not feel like ourselves, and we do not act like ourselves, rather we allow our sins to dictate how we act. This is isolating. Sin alienates us from our fellow man. Sin is self serving thus we use or ignore others. Sinning against others destroys that natural bond we have as a human family. Finally, sin alienates us from the world around us. Life gets very narrow when struggling with sin and guilt. In the end we are alone in our sin. Although Esther was alone for other reasons, alone she was, and in her loneliness she cried out to God. In this Esther was pleasing to God. We can imitate her this Lent in our desire to turn from sin and believe the Good News. Our sins isolate us, but we can cry out to God in our isolation and loneliness and He will respond to us. He will free us from our temptations and our sins. He is not angry with us for we are pleasing to Him. We are His children. Crying out to Him even in our sins, we will no longer be alienated, we will be healed. By His wounds in fact we are healed. Cry out to Him. You are not alone. Our Father loves you. Come back to Him.

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