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THURSDAY OF THE FIRST WEEK OF LENT, FEBRUARY 25, 2021



Verse before the Gospel Ps 51:12a, 14a


A clean heart create for me, O God;

give me back the joy of your salvation.


REFLECTION: "A clean heart create for me, O God."


Did you know there are Seven Penitential Psalms?: 32, 38, 102, 130, 143, and 51, also called the "Miserere".


This psalm relates David's repentance for sending Uriah to his death so he could commit adultery with Bathsheba.


King David was a man that loved God, and failed in being faithful. Then he would repent, and try again. Just like all of us. He practiced repentance all of his life. These events are related in 2 Samuel 12:1-14, and psalm 51 is the response of David once he realizes he has committed evil and asks for God's permission.


How many times do we, ourselves, confess the same sins over and over?


We try to get back on our feet, and try to do the right thing.


However, we must recognize that we cannot do it alone, by our own means. We must acknowledge that we need God's help to do this. We must have true contrition and humility to do so, and believe me, that is the hardest thing to do.


Today I invite you to meditate on this psalm, and ask Him to help us see and acknowledge our own sin and faults, so we can truly live in Him.

Psalm 51
For the leader. A psalm of David,
when Nathan the prophet came to him after he had gone in to Bathsheba.

I

Have mercy on me, God, in accord with your merciful love;
in your abundant compassion blot out my transgressions.
Thoroughly wash away my guilt;
and from my sin cleanse me.
For I know my transgressions;
my sin is always before me.
Against you, you alone have I sinned;
I have done what is evil in your eyes
So that you are just in your word,
and without reproach in your judgment.

Behold, I was born in guilt,
in sin my mother conceived me.
Behold, you desire true sincerity;
and secretly you teach me wisdom.
Cleanse me with hyssop, that I may be pure;
wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
You will let me hear gladness and joy;
the bones you have crushed will rejoice.

II

Turn away your face from my sins;
blot out all my iniquities.
A clean heart create for me, God;
renew within me a steadfast spirit.
Do not drive me from before your face,
nor take from me your holy spirit.
Restore to me the gladness of your salvation;
uphold me with a willing spirit.
I will teach the wicked your ways,
that sinners may return to you.
Rescue me from violent bloodshed, God, my saving God,
and my tongue will sing joyfully of your justice.
Lord, you will open my lips;
and my mouth will proclaim your praise.
For you do not desire sacrifice or I would give it;
a burnt offering you would not accept.
My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;
a contrite, humbled heart, O God, you will not scorn.

III

Treat Zion kindly according to your good will;
build up the walls of Jerusalem.
Then you will desire the sacrifices of the just,
burnt offering and whole offerings;
then they will offer up young bulls on your altar.

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