Friday of the Third Week of Lent

When you read the parable of the tax collector and the Pharisee in the Temple, can’t you just hear the dialogue? “O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity!”  Hear the words drip with false humility and supercilious prayer. Imagine the scene on stage and notice how the audience shows amusement. The laugh, though, may be on them, on us. How easy it is to be the Pharisee in real life. Of course, we would never say how much better we are than everyone else. But we surely can think it—perhaps way too many times.

O God, as I abstain from meat today, help me to abstain from proud thoughts.

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