February 25, 2015

A Lenten Creed

"The way of life as set down by St. Benedict in his Rule offers a set of Christian ideals which are sufficiently flexible, adaptable, and moderate so that no one need be dismayed or discouraged at failure to achieve the heights of holiness all at once. St. Benedict makes room for many different levels of spiritual progress when he states: '[Let the abbot] so moderate all things that there be something for the strong to strive after and nothing to dishearten the weak,' (RB 64:19)."  (source: http://oblatesavannah.com/oblates/what-are-benedictine-oblates)

I think I've just found my Lenten creed.

Both St. Benedict and St. Francis de Sales preached and wrote often and expansively on finding holiness in one's vocation, right where you are.  Now, thanks to Lent, I've got 40 days to seriously ponder and consider who I am, where I am, and what I am doing in service to God.


God made you to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world and to be happy with Him for ever in Heaven.  Don't miss this chance to renew and refresh your focus on Him by, "giving up," extraneous distractions in your life and clearing a space to be filled by Him.

Liken it to a spiritual shoveling out of the way all the books, toys, and general detritus of your living room when company is about to arrive.  It's not that any of those items are inherently evil or shameful.  They are, however, impediments to your guests having a clear uncluttered path to your best room and the most comfortable chair.

Clear a path for God this Lent.  Invite Him into your heart and your life more deeply by clearing a few non-life-threatening things out of the way.  Don't set yourself up for failure.  I mean, c'mon -- don't give up coffee, cigarettes, and booze all at once.  Pick one and be deliberate about making a choice each day not to indulge in that thing (except on Sundays, the feast of the Resurrection).

Make it simple.  Make it stick.

If you fail, start over.
If you fall, stand up.
If you crumble, stretch out your arm and reach for His hand.

The Lord loves you.  This Lent, let Him in.

No comments: