Last night we received a slight dusting of snow and then it iced covering the trees encapsulating them in to delicate figurines gleaming in the morning sunlight. While it looks beautiful, I sit on my couch in the warmth of my home knowing how frigid the air outside is. I should be used to it by now having been born and raised in New England and now raising my own family here, but I am starting to get cabin fever. It’s been a long, cold winter and I am looking forward to spring. While winter seems so barren and lifeless, I know that there is life not too far away. Soon the trees will begin to bud again and the rabbits that live in our backyard will have another litter of bunnies. We have a turtle that comes and lays its eggs in the same spot every year and the grass and flowers will bring color to the land once again. Ah, life!
As I snuggle into the warmth of the blanket wrapped around me, I reflect upon the upcoming weeks and months and the life it will bring. Is it not fitting that Lent begins in the winter with the rising of Christ in the spring? Lent has always been my favorite time of year. While Christmas celebrates the birth of Christ and I enjoy spending the time celebrating with my family, Lent is a time in which we can reflect upon our spirituality and strengthen our relationship with the Lord. It is a time of prayer, fasting and repentance.
Every year, I give up snacks, avoid meat on Fridays, and ensure Confession is one of my top priorities. This year, I have come to a point in my life that I would like to offer more in response to the sacrifice our Lord Jesus has made for us. I am a Martha when it comes to donating my time to the Lord. Always running and ensuring that I am more hands on and always worrying. I need to repent for not sitting and listening to the Lord and being a little more like Mary. The Lord is calling to me, actually more like shouting, and I am not listening.
Catholic Spiritual Direction has been a blessing to me. While I read the entries on the site, I do not always fully take the time to understand and absorb the meaning (this is me not listening…). I also have the blessing of a very good friend in my life. Dan, the founder of Catholic Spiritual Direction, has lead me on the right path every time I have strayed and though we are close in age, I look to him as a parental figure ensuring I am safe in the Lord’s hands (Dan would tell you that I sometimes don’t listen very well). Then, the other day, I received a note from a priest that is one of the holiest men I know in which he would like me to be a part of another apostolate (ok – starting to listen).
HEY MARTA, DO YOU HEAR ME NOW?!?!?!
Yes, Lord, I hear you calling.
This Lenten season, I am going to sacrifice my time to You, Lord. I hope to keep it up after the Lenten season and make You a major part of my daily routine.
This is my promise to you:
- Cut down on Facebook and TV time to learn more about my faith and the Lord’s teachings by taking the time to fully comprehend what is in front of me.
- Join the book club on Catholic Spiritual Direction. I saw that they will soon be starting Navigating the Interior Life and though I even had the unique opportunity to read the manuscript before publication, I would like to apply the teachings to my life in order to clear my path to the Lord.
- Go to Confession more often.
- Let the dishes be.
- Spend more time sitting at Your feet.
My prayers are for everyone to take the time to truly evaluate what they want to sacrifice this Lenten season. If you do not go to Confession, go at least once during this Lenten season. If you are also looking to clear your path to the Lord, join the Book Club with others who are committed to the same journey. Take the time to pray daily or, if you already do so, increase the amount of time even by a few minutes. Take the next step and seek out a Spiritual Director.
As the sunlight grows slightly longer each day of the week, we know that spring is approaching. Let us make our sacrifices to Him during this cold and bleak time of year in wait of His rising. Let His arms be the blanket that gives us warmth. His sacrifice to us was greater than anything we can sacrifice for Him.
May God bless you!
Art for this post on a Lenten reflection — less of Martha to more of Mary: Mirror of Christ in the House of Mary and Martha, Diego Velázquez, circa 1620, PD-US author’s life plus 100 years or less, Wikimedia Commons.