Its not just the number of hours in a week that make you FULL TIME — what is up with 40 40 always 40 … ?
Mentioned 146 times in Scripture, the number 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or probation. Here are some of my favorite biblical 40’s:
– 40 days to build the Ark, and 40 days of the Flood Genesis 7:17
– Israelites Wandered in the wilderness for 40 years Exodus 16:35
– 40 years of Peace in Israel Judges 3:11; 5:31; 8:28
– Egypt was desolated for 40 years Ezekiel 29:11
– 40 years for Israel to be restored Ezekiel 29:13
– 40 days of Fasting by Moses Exodus 24:18; 34:28;
– 40 days of Fasting by Elijah 1 Kings 19:8
– Nineveh overthrown after 40 days Jonah 3:4
– Jesus Fasts 40 days in the Desert Matthew 4:2
– Christ appeared 40 days after the Resurrection Acts 1:3
– 40 years later the Romans destroyed the temple Matt 24:1 – 2
Scholars suggest that the period of either 40 days or 40 years signifies a period of testing, trial and judgment. Each period of 40 years marks an epoch (generation). So if the bible in the Hebrew context talk of generations, it talks of one period of 40 years to another. For example: So Noah made the ark for a whole generation, meanwhile preaching repentance, in which God was patient for a whole generation to pass before he destroyed the earth.
One of my favorite non-Biblical 40s The word Quarantine comes from the Italian ‘quaranta giorni’ meaning —– ‘forty days’ which was the period that ships were required to be isolated before passengers and crew could go ashore during the Black Death. I feel in a way we are QUARANTINED together as the Pittsburgh 40 Days for Life community right now to strengthen us for building the kingdom of God through the Gospel of Life.
In fact, I have always seen 40 Days for Life as an event in itself– … But last weekend at Catholic Mass, the story of Jesus’ temptation in the desert was retold and I clearly heard that the 40 Days in the desert was a PREPARATION for Jesus as he accepted his public ministry. Finishing the 40 day period was the BEGINNING of His life’s work!! The devil’s temptation during that time served to strengthen Jesus for what he was about to do.
Jesus didn’t give a heavy sigh after his 40 days in the desert and think “Sheesh, I’m glad that’s over!” He strapped on his sandals, packed his gear, and headed to preach and serve and die for us. His 40 days was a beginning for sure.
CAN YOU join me in pledging that this 40 Days for Life does not signify the End of our work, but rather a NEW , refreshed BEGINNING for more Pro-Life work in Pittsburgh?
HERE ARE TODAY’S SHIFT REPORTS FROM OUR COMMITTED, FRIGID, ST. PADDY’S DAY PARADE DAY PRAYER WARRIORS:
7-9 Shift Manager Ginny writes:
Tom had just about finished “setting up” when I arrived at 7AM, there was another person,
Pat who was there until 8 AM. David was also there for the shift. There was numerous escorts, about 11. Early on one couple had tried
to get into PP, left, only to return later and entered the building (unfortunately).
Fr Tim and his “angels” came about 8 AM, a glorious sight for sure. There was light foot traffic into the clinic, only one other couple aside from the one mentioned above.
Lots of young and older folks colorfully dressed on their way to the parade.
About 8:45 the “owner” (several individuals say they own this place) of the “lounge” right next door
to PP, loudly announced his property rights and told people to get out of the doorways, etc.
He then entered the bar, returning to set up a large crate-like item on the sidewalk, that was the last I saw him.
Sue came at 9.
9-11 Shift Manager Sue reports a hopeful story of a potential life saved:
I arrived to a very large group from the Guardians for Life, along with Joe and AJ from the Bellevue K of C and another faithful pray-er on the opposite side who had been there from the earlier shift (I am sorry that I did not get her name). Sidewalk Advocate Terri reached out to a couple being escorted in, but they did not respond.We could see the woman in tears as the couple stood in the PP vestibule. We prayed for the couple as Terri stood within their sight line. We were very happy to see the couple come out within a much shorter time period than an abortion procedure would take. Please pray for this couple, that they will ultimately choose life for their child!!
Despite the hubbub of many people walking up Liberty toward the parade or Pens game, it seemed that overall, fewer people entered PP this morning than on a typical Saturday. The wind picked up, and poor Charlie got beaned on the head by a large piece of flying paper trash. Persecution comes in many forms! One pleasant young woman approaching PP accepted a yellow card from me, listened to my explanation of it, and told me she was “just going to her doctor’s office in the basement.” Jim L. came with two huge bundles of roses and handed them out to passersby. The companion of a woman who accepted one said to her, “You realize that rose is from a person on the other side,” and the woman replied, “I know but I don’t care!” Hopefully all of these folks discussed above will have a change of heart!
11-1 Shift Manager Dean Reports:
Thank you Knights of Columbus for standing with me on a cold, blustery day. It was a fairly quiet day, given the otherwise party atmosphere. This also meant a drop off for P.P.’s business, which was something for which we can be thankful.
1-3 Shift Manager Billy Reports :
For my shift today I was accompanied by Charlie who has been such a good sport for being at the vigil all day. Shout out to Charlie, Kurt from Knights of Columbus, a Jim, from North Hills, and an Adam from Monroeville came down to witness with me today. We had a crowd of people standing by us multiple times blocking the way for passerby traffic, and many entering in next door to Planned Parenthood during the shift, and the parade was going on. We had a lot of nay sayers, but we had a lot of supporters coming passed us, and one guy walking by me had his hand in the air saying He was pro-life, and he high-fived me. I had a couple of times of silent prayer. The parade though being very busy for us we were able to see that only a couple of people left the abortion clinic today, and I only saw one or two people go in. All in all a good day. Happy Saint Patrick’s day! – Billy
3-5 (plus many earlier hours!) Shift Manager Charlie Reports:
All in all very good day. At 4pm we had a shouting match between a group of about 8 yelling at us and 2 guys defending us. Me along with the 3 other guys kept quiet . Things quieted down after a minute but noticing that things were not going to get better we decided to wrap up at 4:30.