We pause mid-way through Lent to celebrate the feast of the Annunciation. Isaiah records the prophecy of this event as spoken to Ahaz: “The virgin shall be with child, and bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.” Suddenly God breaks into human history with a unique miracle of life and grace. The world will never be the same with the advent of the Messiah. The verse for today’s responsorial psalm sums up Mary’s response: “Here am I, Lord: I come to do your will.”

The events of our own lives are usually less dramatic. Yet, as we trace the patterns of God’s grace in our hearts, there are clear “crossroads moments” when any of us comes to a point of decision. Recall such moments in your own life today: How did you struggle? How did you decide? This Lent 2017 how are you invited to respond to some situation large or small as Mary did: “Here am I, Lord: I come to do your will.”

—The Jesuit Prayer Team