From the prophet Jeremiah we will hear how God promises restored relationship with his people despite their brokenness and misdeeds. The new covenant that God forms with his people will be in our hearts. God says, "I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."
Our psalm, Psalm 51, is an expression of our response to God's desire for this covenant with us: "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." This beautiful penitential psalm is an extended prayer for forgiveness, and it demonstrates how confession of sin is a pre-condition for accepting that forgiveness.
The Letter to the Hebrews explains how Jesus shared human weakness and suffering in order to become a source of salvation for human beings. Jesus demonstrates this to his disciples in our gospel lesson from John. When Greeks come to Philip saying, "Sir, we wish to see Jesus," he and Andrew go to Jesus and tell him this. Jesus replies, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified." Then, he tells them in metaphorical language how this will be accomplished through his suffering and death: "unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit." He extends this process into the lives of his disciples: "Those who love their life will lose it, and those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there will my servant be also."
This week concludes our Lenten exploration of "The Five Questions for (the End of) Life" by taking up the final question: "What would a good day look like?" Our lessons show us that such a day would begin with accepting our limitations-our brokenness and sinfulness-and acknowledging them before God in order to receive the forgiveness and wholeness he extends to us. Flowing out from that acceptance, a good day would be focused on what is truly important and enjoying what we love. Our collect for the day puts it this way: "Grant your people grace to love what you command and desire what you promise, that, among all the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts may surely be fixed where true joys are to be found."