It is hard to believe but Lent starts this Wednesday as our ashes are applied. As a child, I always attempted to give up a food I liked and found the fast lasted about three days. I think that's because I didn't understand what Lent was really about. I played the martyr and wanted everyone to 'see' the wonderful sacrifice I was making. Talk about pride!
However, even as an adult I struggle with the concept of Lent. What to give up? Then I remembered something said by a nun in my distant past. How about giving up gossip and being critical of others? How about giving up complaining and griping about things? These are all good ideas that point us in the right direction, but still I wanted to do more to prepare my soul for Easter.
That's when it occurred to me that I was just using my mind and not my spirit to decide for myself. I was treating Lent like I was buying a car. Again, it was all about me in adult form.
Maybe? Just Maybe? I should ask Jesus what He wanted from me for Lent.
It is not about what I think. It is about letting Him talk to me. I need to go into prayer and meditation. He wants to speak to my heart. Only God knows my soul and He alone knows what I need to do to grow closer to Him. And isn't that what Lent is all about? Isn't He, by preparing me to rejoice in His Resurrection, preparing me for my own?