"This is my chosen Son; listen to him.” – Luke 9:35
"You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased." – Luke 3:22
Many voices vie for our attention. They can be placed in two camps. One is for us; the other is against.
The first and louder kind says, "Prove that you are a good person," or "You'd better be ashamed of yourself," or “Nobody really cares about you," or “You are a nobody because you don’t have anybody,” or “You’ve done THAT! God can no longer love you!” or "The more you become successful, popular, and powerful, the more you will be accepted and loved.” This kind of voice is so ingrained in us and permeates our social climate that going against it involves a struggle against the mainstream current. It involves a kind of suffering.
Yet, beneath all these often very noisy voices a still, small voice whispers, "You are my Beloved, on whom my favor rests." That's the voice we need to hear most of all. To hear that voice, however, requires serious willingness; it requires solitude, silence, and a strong determination to listen. It may take time to get past those deafening voices telling us that our worth is directly proportional to how well we perform or to what we possess.
This is the invitation to listen to God’s chosen Son, Jesus, who reveals to each of us our belovedness. The journey of Lent involves listening to that gentle voice, in a deeper way.
That's what prayer is. It is listening to the voice that calls, "You are my Beloved." And to treat others as God’s beloved.
"Lord, help me to devote time for prayerful solitude. Help me to listen to your voice within.”