This year I am not going into the desert……..As Sunday turned to Monday, the week began, the week of the beginning of Lent. Hold everything, I thought, I’m just coming out of the desert! What! Back in??? Oh I don’t think so. And then it crept in……guilt. Guilt to the fact that things were turning around and I needed to recuperate from the last trip to the dry, dark and barren place before I go back in. I cannot go back in, at least right now.
So we had a talk, me and God, God and me.
We all need to take a journey into the barren desert. Mine just happen to come a little out of sync with the liturgical calendar. I wondered how, how do I connect with my faith for this Lenten season? A season of prayer, alms, fast.
Growing up I always thought of it as “giving something up”. Of course my experience and wisdom now tells me that it is a movement towards something, an adding in.
Lent is a season of fasting: As Jesus fasted in the desert, let us pray for the grace to consume less and surrender what is not a part of the holy life; and with the time, money and energy we gain, may we contribute more to the common good. For the grace to fast……..Ya, I can do that!
Lent is a season to give alms. As Jesus sacrificed his life for us, let us renew our intention to offer meaningful sacrifice: to extend a kind word, a helping hand and material assistance to those whom God places in our path during this Lent season. For the grace of generosity…..Ya, I can do that!
Lent is a season of prayer. As Jesus was a man of prayer, let us resolve to spend time alone with God each day, time praying simple prayers with our families and time worshiping with our church community. For the grace to surrender to prayer……..Ya, I can do that!
I wish your journeys (in and outside of Lent) in the desert be short but profound.