Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Like Yesterday another story: The people, rescued from the slavery of Egypt, are exhausted, trudging through the desert, hungry, thirsty, hot and tired. “If this is liberation, take us back to Egypt!” God sends serpents to punish their complaining. Moses intercedes. They repent. They mount a serpent on a pole and anyone bitten who looks on this artifice will be saved. The serpent on the pole is a symbol of Christ on the cross. The lesson: Baptism has rescued us and now we are on our way through the difficulties of life and we must cooperate with grace, have courage and perseverance, be forgetful of self until we reach the Promised Land, heaven. Meanwhile, we grow tired, weary of fighting temptations. Like St. Paul we should look at our crucifix each day and ask the Lord to give us strength, courage and trust. But we do not ask for ourselves alone. We are pilgrims trudging together. We must pray for one another particularly for those who find the journey wearisome.