If you can recall, I started Lent with a lot of confidence. Well, I planned for it with a lot of confidence
. My plans relied on a faulty expectation that I would live this Lent perfectly. As it happens, my titling the post “IRL,” or “in real life,” made it as real as it gets.
Holy Week is upon us and the joy of Easter is bubbling up in my heart. Now is a good time to evaluate how Lent went and, well, it went as well as it began.
Ash Wednesday was in the middle of the brutal Winter storms and Polar Vortex that enveloped the entire country. My plan to not eat out crumbled immediately. In fact, it took almost three weeks for my grocery store to get back to regular levels of food stock. Ditto for the kids watching TV. Our habit in that regard is still much the same.
So, what of this failure? Was it even a failure at all? No. This was not my one shot-at-the-moon chance to completely remake my life into a perfect disciple. In fact, Lent is a reminder of the need for constant renewal. Not singular, not one-and-done, but *constant.* This idea, which inspired the life and work of St. Francis, always inspires me to get up and try again. I do a lot of falling.
While I ate out just as much as I usually do, and while my kids continued to watch TV more than I prefer, the fact is, this was a very fruitful Lent. I completed the renewal of my consecration to St. Joseph and have enjoyed the closeness that the process brings. I find myself praying more throughout the day, and have made meaningful strives to seek God’s Will in my day-to-day life.
We think too little of Lent, aim to do small sacrifices when, in reality, the true calling is to sacrifice everything. Our pride, our ambition, and our goals get in the way of God’s perfect plan for us. If anything, this Lent is a reminder that my plans are not worth pursuing, only His are.