In Genesis, we read, “I know now how devoted you are to God, since you did not withhold from me your own beloved son.” We all know how God put Abraham to multiple tests. The ultimate test was God asking Abraham to sacrifice his only son, Isaac. We can all imagine what it was like for Abraham to go through the horror of planning this sacrifice. And we can also sense the relief at God’s messenger’s last minute intervention.
It is Abraham’s “not withholding” that is total obedience of God’s command. The reward is God’s ultimate blessing of “descendants as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the seashore.”
What is it that God asks us not to withhold if we are to be faithful to God’s command? How am I using this time of Lent to “not withhold” but give freely of my time to pray, to fast and to give alms? How am I giving time and attention, love and respect to my family? Am I growing in generosity? Am I a witness of being so devoted to God that I would be willing to sacrifice?