St. Matthew 17: 22-27
St. John 3: 13-21
Before Holy Qurbana
Numbers 21: 4-9
Psalms 34: 1-9
Zechariah 12: 6-14
Acts 15: 22 -33
II Corinthians 9: 1-15
St. John 3: 13-21
�They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way; they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, "Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the desert? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food! Then the LORD sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died. The people came to Moses and said, "We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take the snakes away from us.So Moses prayed for the people. The LORD said to Moses, "Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live. So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived.�- Numbers 21:4-9
This passage from the Old Testament which is read on Mid-Lent before Holy Qurbana holds a great deal of significance. When the Israelites spoke out against God and complained about the lack of food, He punished the people for losing their faith in God. The Israelites soon realized their mistake and asked Moses to pray and intercede for forgiveness from God on their behalf. Moses put a bronze snake on the pole that was placed in the center of the camp so that all who looked upon it could be healed. In this same manner, we erect a blessed Cross, known as the Golgotha, in the middle of the church on the 25th day of the Great Lent to represent our Lord who died on the Cross. We do this so that all the faithful who enter the church can meditate upon the Cross and be healed of their spiritual and physical illnesses.
In our daily lives, we are continually seeking spiritual nourishment and growth. During Lent, we fast and pray to overcome the evils and temptations we face. Yet, we still struggle with our own journey through the Great Lent. We continue to sin, to fail in our endeavors, and endure trials and tribulations. Though we are fatigued and tired, we must not stumble. Looking at the Cross reminds us not only of Christ's crucifixion, but also His resurrection, and with it eternal salvation. Ultimately, we must take up His Cross so that we can follow Christ and can be a light that shines and can be seen by others.
Dear Heavenly Father, we ask that You continue to bless us during this Holy Lenten Season as we look towards Your blessed Cross for healing, strength and guidance. Amen.
'2013 Lenten Meditation' published by MGOCSM, Philadelphia