Many came to know Lent as the season of giving up something really difficult and ultimately forcing ourselves to fulfill our Lenten promise during the 40 (week)days of Lent. When we end up not living up to the 40 days of sacrifice, we always seem to just go back to our old ways and tell ourselves, “There’s always next year!” or “I’ll do better next Lent.” We always seem to just brush it off and move on with the rest of the year. Just like “No Meat Fridays” during Lent. I’ve come across people where they would forget about the fasting during Fridays then ends up saying, “I already ate it, might as well not waste it. I’ll try again next Friday”. Then there’s another idea (excuse) of “chicken” not considered being meat, because it’s in the “poultry” section in Superstore; or the idea of eating lots of really good fish dishes during Fridays (like sushi). It loses the purpose and it loses the meaning.
As I sat in front of the priest to confess my sins, I truly desired to be forgiven, because I was carrying a rather heavy burden of doubt and denial. Don’t get me wrong, I have not neglected my beliefs, but rather I became stagnant–full of self and less of Him. I became a conscious mirror of criticism, because I kept treating the bruises of confusion instead of relieving the pleasure of peace. I wanted to be forgiven, because I wanted to feel worthy to be with the Lord during these 40 days of Lent. I told the priest how I was lacking peace, and that from this lack of peace I knew it was because of the lack of prayer I’ve been doing. It is true that even if you are doing the work of the Lord, you will still lose sight of actually being with the Lord. Maybe I’m the Martha in the Bible, and maybe to some extent, it wouldn’t hurt to be Mary, because after all Jesus even said, “Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” (cf. Lk 10:42)
As we begin the season of Lent, remember how Jesus spent His forty days: fasting and praying.