Lent 2016: Ready or Not—Here it Comes!
Oh God, let something essential happen to me, something more than interesting or entertaining or thoughtful. Oh God, let something essential happen to me, something awesome, something real. Speak to my condition, Lord and change me somewhere inside where it matters. Let something happen which is my real self, Oh God.
This year, I must admit that I don’t feel quite ready for Lent with all of its demands and its disciplines. It seems to have come quickly and we have barely cleaned up from Christmas!
But I also don’t want to miss anything. I don’t want to miss the possibility of having my life stripped down to its barest essence through the disciplines of abstinence. I don’t want to miss the possibility for real life change that only comes through repentance, confession and making things right. I don’t want to miss the opportunity to return to God with all my heart…to experience resurrection in the places in my heart and life that feel like they are dead and dying.
SO, even though I don’t feel quite ready, there is something about the season of Lent that causes me to feel strangely hopeful about the power of repentance and forgiveness in my own life… hopeful about the possibility of greater freedom in places where I am in bondage…hopeful about the Pascal mystery of death, burial, and resurrection taking place in my life.
Ready or not, my heart is also saying that I want to enter into Lent in a way that has meaning and will change me somewhere deep inside where it matters. I don’t want to just “give up chocolate for Lent” because I like chocolate and God is the curmudgeon in the sky who wants to keep it from me. I want to enter into Lenten disciplines that correspond to the places in my life that cry out for deeper levels of transformation. Oh God, let something essential happen to me.
So what about you? How do you want to enter into Lent?