C.S. Lewis once wrote: “God gives His grace where He finds the vessel empty enough to receive them.” St. Augustine says: “God gives where He finds empty hands.” This Lenten Season may we break free from whatever has filled our hearts so full that there is little or no room for God? In light of the recent school shootings we as a nation are forced to look within ourselves and see where our priories lie. Have we as a nation drifted so far off course that God’s hopes and dreams for our nation have drifted beyond his reach. Have we pushed God so far out of our schools, our homes, and our government that we are drifting from one golden calf to another? Have we become so consumed with material possessions and hatred that our hearts have room for nothing else? Have we as a nation and as individuals become so consumed with material possessions and violence that there is no room in our hearts for Gods’ love and grace? A love and grace that is meant to be shared with those around us. The scriptures tells us in Romans 15:13 – “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Today many are living in fear while the hope and joy offered by God is nowhere to be found. This Lenten Season may we be found on our knees seeking the face of God; admitting our shortcomings and seeking God’s forgiveness. May we as individuals and as a nation turn our hearts and minds back to God? May we get back to the point where we can proclaim as the psalmist did in Psalms 34:8 – “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is he who takes refuge in him.” May we come to know the God of grace, hope, love and acceptance shown to us through the life, death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. May we as individuals, as a nation and as a community of faithful followers of Christ, empty our hearts and minds enough to receive God’s gifts of grace and love so that we can be found, proclaiming – “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalms 118:24). May God bless and keep us all hungry for his Word. Amen.