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As we journey these forty days of Lent we ground ourselves in two primordial truths: God is our life breath, and we are vulnerable to death. The beauty of creation begins with God's desire for a suitable partner... God fashions you, all of humanity, us, in his own image; indeed, every breath we breathe is God's life flowing through our whole being. Then God reveals God's own poverty and humility by acknowledging "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make a suitable partner for him...(Gn2:18)". God realizes that God is not a suitable partner for the first human being; just human life; then together with God the creator and our created humanity we become a Holy Communion of love. Our being created makes us vulnerable to sin and death; indeed without God's grace, revealed in Christ, we cannot avoid sin; we learned that early on in the Garden. We encounter the beautiful fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil everywhere we go; likewise that cunning little serpent is always around to tempt us. Thankfully, God's love and mercy, poured out in Christ Jesus, are always and everywhere more powerful than sin and death.

We live our whole life at the foot of the cross which in its awfulness reveals the awesomeness of God's love. The cross is first of all the accursed tree, the one which brought sin and death into the world through the knowledge of good and evil. When the great prophet, the one who proclaimed the Kingdom, Jesus of Nazareth, was placed on that tree, all the powers and principalities, believed they had brought an end to their enemy; The Romans thought they had brought an end to revolution; the Chief Priests, the scribes and the Pharisees thought they had brought an end to the heresy and blasphemy; sin thought it had brought an end of forgiveness; death thought it had brought an end to life; the Devil thought it had brought the death of God.

God poured out God's whole life on the cross, showing the depth of God's love for every human person; God, on the cross, forgave God's executioners. Then, all of creation waited again; God fell to the earth again; God gathered the mud and the tragedy into God's arms again, not even breathing within God...waiting...waiting...waiting. And then the Cross of Christ stood revealed as the Tree of Life; the Tree of knowledge of good and evil was cast out. All that remains is love. This Love of God is the life breath of the existence of all creation. We remain vulnerable; we are no longer afraid; we are alive in Christ.

Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.


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