Thursday, March 24, 2011
It's only the second week of Lent???
Lent is only 40 days. 40 days isn't much, right? It always seems do-able. The week before Ash Wednesday, you're picking out what you're gonna give up, looking at the Stations of the Cross schedule - yeah, you can do this.
Then the reality of Lent takes hold. You decided to give up Diet Coke, and now have a permanent headache, not to mention a constant craving every time you pass McDonald's. You get a vicious head cold. Soccer starts for your ten year old, and you're out in 40 degree weather watching him practice, cheering "Good job, honey" when you'd rather be --- anywhere else.
You know that Lent is supposed to be about getting closer to God - becoming the better person God created you to be. You know that the prayer and fasting is supposed to focus you on that relationship. Yet, here we are, two weeks in and all we can think is, "It's only the second week of Lent?? For cryin' out loud...."
This is one of the reasons that Lent is 40 days long. Because, the Church, in her infinite wisdom, knows that most of us can be holy and passionate for a week. It's the second week where we start to lose it, and the third week where we're really tempted to just get the stupid Diet Coke and drink it already. It's tough. It's supposed to be tough. It's not hanging-on-a-cross tough - Christ made sure we didn't have to do that, but it's human tough.
So, I'll tell you what I'm telling myself: suck it up, hang tough and finish the game. Lent is hard - pray harder.