Thursday, March 1, 2012

It's Hard

Already at this early point in Lent some people are starting to struggle with their commitment to their Lenten exercise.  A lot of people make commitments to give up "things" such as candy - or cakes - or smoking - or foul language - and here we are and many of those best intentions have already failed.  What to do once you realize that you were not able to honor your commitment?  Throw up your hands and just figure that you are done with Lent already?  Hardly - if you were unsuccessful with one attempt - go ahead and re-commit.  Perhaps it would be better to try something different - not necessarily easier - but just something different.  

Personally, I am not a big fan of "giving up" as that puts a negative spin on the period of Lent when we are actually looking for something positive to come out of our spiritual exercise.  For myself - I prefer to add something to my life during Lent.  It may be extra prayer time or spending more time at Adoration - or it might be reading the Bible or other spiritual writing.  I guess by adding these things I am giving up free time but to me it doesn't feel like I am giving up anything - just switching my focus off of myself and onto the Lord.

Trying to improve our relationship with Jesus - with God - is not the easiest thing to do. Just because we spend hours upon hours in prayer - does not mean that we will walk away with a better relationship.  Something more has to happen in those prayer hours than just prayer.  There must be a change - maybe in our mind - maybe in our heart - maybe in our thoughts - definitely in our actions.  What we do and how we do it - reflects a lot on our relationship to self and thus to God. As we empty ourselves before God - we ask in humility that He fills us with that which we need.  We ask Him to take us into a deeper relationship with Him and to open our eyes to the possibilities that exist when we are truly one with Him.  We persevere - we hang in there - we do our best - because God knows that it is hard.

Deacon Dale