(Day 1 of 5-Day Mid-Year Fasting &Prayer)

Scripture Reading: Matthew 9:1-2

Proverbs 28:13, says “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whosoever confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.” Brethren sin is a reproach to any people, sin is responsible for many calamities we are facing as individuals and nation. Sin is our greatest enemy, sin multiplies evil, sin brings shame and disgrace, sin brings curses into our life, sin brings sickness and death into humanity, sin gives the devil access to our lives, sin make us captives of the evil one, sin hinders our prayers, sin kills the life of grace in us, sin separates us from God, thereby denying us access to the Holy One. Isaiah 59:1-2 says “Behold, the LORD’S hand is not so short that it cannot save; nor is His ear so dull that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear.” No wonder St. John Chrysostom says, “There is one calamity-sin”. Philip Henry says, “Sins are like circles in the water when a stone is thrown into it; one produces another .When anger was in the heart of Cain, murder was not far off.”
Dear Child of God, as we begin our 5-day mid-year fasting and prayer starting today 26th to 30th, we approach the Throne of mercy asking God to forgive us. Psalm 130:3 says “If you, LORD, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand?” Beloved, we are all in need of God’s mercy, never think that you do not need to pray for God’s mercy?. We all need to repent from all our evil ways both those hidden sins that no one else knows. If you can repent of it, you can be forgiven of it! It doesn’t matter what you’ve done, if you turn to God and confess your sins, He will forgive you of ALL unrighteousness… that includes anything you’ve done, that you are willing to bring before Him! In Daniel 9:9 “The Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him.” The only sin God can’t forgive, is the one you didn’t repent of. It is God’s deep desire to see you turn to Him and receive forgiveness for your sins.
Ephesians 4:31-32 says “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ, God forgave you.” If you decide not to forgive, your miracles will not manifest. So you must forgive that person that offended you, no matter how deep the hurt may be. In order to receive forgiveness for our sins, we need to forgive others. Forgiving others allows us to overcome feelings of anger, bitterness, or revenge. Forgiveness can heal spiritual wounds and bring the peace and love that only God can give. Forgiveness brightens the future.
So as we begin our 5-day mid-year fasting and prayer starting today, we must repent from our sins and forgive those who sinned against us. Forgiveness and repentance go hand-in-hand in a Christian’s life.

MASS: GREEN Gen 12:1-9; Ps 33:12-13.18-19.20.22 (R.12b); Accl. Heb 4:12; Mt 7: 1-5

Prayer Points
1. Take the song “Cast me not away from your presence O Lord…”
2. Lord Jesus I ask now for Your forgiveness, For the wrongs that I have done, And the things that I have neglected, I ask for Your forgiveness, For the people I have hurt along the way, And those who I have failed to love as You love, I ask for Your forgiveness, I receive Your forgiveness, And resolve in my heart, That with Your strength I determine not to make these errors again, I receive Your forgiveness, And by the power of Your Holy Spirit, I walk away from everything I know to be wrong, And embrace everything I know about You, For the kingdom, the power and the glory, Are always and forever Yours in the name of Jesus-Amen
3. Lord Jesus, I bring to mind (mention those you remember) and all those who have wronged me, I feel hurt by them. Right now I confess any negative feelings I have about them, I forgive the wrongs they have done towards me.
4. Pray for the conversion of sinners

Exercise: Reconcile with God through the Sacrament of Reconciliation as you begin this fast

Meditation: Colossians 3:13