It is Lent. And once again, I am reminded of why I love this season, with its fasting and graces. It’s not easy, following in your footsteps, thinking of the desert and then, with whatever romantic notions I may have had in the beginning smashed as I get started, BEING in the desert. For one thing, it’s harder. Instead of rushing off to work the other day, I had to pack my lunch, and when my colleague ran out to get lunch, I had to say “No thanks.” Instead of reading a fast-paced novel, I’m struggling through Saint Faustina’s diary and Mother Teresa’s book – don’t get me wrong; they’re good (they’re just not a novel :)). And instead of giving in to the desire to kick back and check out at the end of the day, I’m focusing on Evening Prayer (or, if it’s really late, Night Prayer).
And you know what, God? It’s great. It’s better for us – for me as an individual, for my life as a mother and a wife, for the people around me. It’s still early in this Lenten journey, but I hope Evening Prayer becomes a permanent habit – it’s so much different to have the most challenging part of my day punctuated with prayer – a good different, an enlightening different, an awesome different. Once again, it’s proof that when I give to you FIRST, you won’t be outdone; when I lay the problems out for you to solve, you’ll do that and more; when I turn to you, you’ll have a hug handy.
It’s the earliest lent in over 100 years, and yet I needed it NOW. (I always do, don’t I?) Help me, Lord, to stay close to you this Lent, to keep my sights set high, to maintain the momentum.