Last year, I set out to read the Bible in one year. I took it passage by passage, book by book. And is it just me or does today’s First Reading sound much like many other passages of the Old Testament?
God: Don’t do the things.
People of the Old Testament: Mmmkay. Does all the things.
God: I said, DON’T do the things.
Prophet 1: Seriously, don’t do the things.
God: I’ll give you one more chance.
OT peeps: Keeps doing the things.
God: UGH, STAHP.
Prophet 2: He means it, you guys.
OT peeps: Where is God when we need Him?
God: Like I said. DON’T DO THE THINGS.
Throughout the Old Testament, we see God’s chosen people continue to turn their backs on Him. They abandoned the commandments; they hardened their hearts. It continually frustrates me and I adopt this holier-than-thou attitude, Um, He says it right there; how hard can it be?
Like many peoples and nations of the Old Testament, I have also turned my back on God (countless times if I’m being honest). I check off those deadly sins like I’m trying to collect them all to get a prize. I sin and sin again. I have spent seasons with a hardened heart. I’ve rejected His commandments and worse of all, I’ve rejected His perfect love. It took me years to return to Him when I refused to go to Confession, all out of pride.
But in His unending mercy and unrelenting love, He allows us to come back to Him. He does not give us just one chance, but infinite chances to return to Him with our whole hearts.
Whether it’s been days, weeks, or years, I invite you to go to Him this Lenten season and confess your sins. He is waiting for your sad, reluctant, wounded, heavy heart with open arms.
This priest examines the rules of the Old Testament in contrast to the New.
Dr. Samantha Aguinaldo-Wetterholm is a wife to Paul, mom to three little ones, and practices dentistry at a public health community center for low income families in the Bay Area, California. She (unashamedly) thinks ice cream is its own food group, loves anything Harry Potter, does not leave the house without wearing sparkly earrings, and is an enthusiastic proponent of the Oxford comma. Find out more about her here.