I have said it before and I will say it again: I love the lectionary.
What is the lectionary? It's the schedule of readings for every day of the year, and specifically for me--in the Catholic Church. The lectionary helps every Catholic Church on earth participate in the Scripture together. In three years, we go through the whole Bible, and what a journey it is!
Not only do I love being in sync with the rest of my Catholic sisters and brothers worldwide, I also love how the lectionary readings are woven together.
Take today's reading, for example: Genesis 3:1-8, Psalm 32, Acts 16:14b, Mark 7:31-37. (Full text here.) It's not always this apparent how the readings are joined together, but consider the first two passages. In Genesis, the serpent deceives Eve and Adam, and after they have eaten the forbidden fruit, they hide from God when He comes to see them for His daily visit. Then we have Psalm 32, with the refrain: "Blessed are those whose sins are forgiven!" Not only can we see the beauty of the Gospel laid out--the blessing of forgiveness after we have sinned--there's more. Eve and Adam hide from God in the garden because they are ashamed, but the psalmist declares that God Himself is his hiding place: "You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance" (Verse 7, NKJV).
How beautiful that image is--though my sin causes me shame, which makes me want to run and hide from God--He is actually the refuge into which I can run and hide myself. He is my safe space, no matter what I've done. I don't want to hide from God anymore--I want to hide in God.
(You can listen to my rendition of Psalm 32 here.)