Peace to you all!!
Today begins Lent. The Liturgy of the day speaks of the traditional ways of living Lent, through giving to the poor, prayer and fasting or 'giving up something for Lent' as we say here in Ireland!
The call of this season is to move beyond the superficial into the deep. The deep is often a mysterious place to us, a place we don't like entering too often, a place where we encounter our real selves in all it's brokenness, uniqueness and also beauty. It is in this deep place that we also encounter God. Lent calls us to move into this space and from here to re-valuate, renovate and reinvigorate our spirits and lives.
The external observances are not an ends in themselves but rather a means by which we can tame the frantic thrashing of our minds and spirits to allow us to communicate with God and God with us at a deeper level. So if it's chocolate, coffee or Facebook, when it gets a little tough and you think, 'a sure one won't do any harm..' be clear the reasons behind you little sacrifice. Is it a good thing for you? Will it benefit somebody else? Will it benefit the world? What intention have you set to accompany you on this Lenten journey?
As Christians we can rest assured that we are never alone. Millions of others around the world are doing the same thing and, though we are not physically next to each other, we still stand spiritually shoulder to shoulder, united through our giving, our prayer and our fasting.
Enjoy this journey and cherish every step. Here is a great little resource to help you on your way...a Lenten Calender (like and Advent Calender but for Lent!)Lent Calender Link