Like her, I missed Ash Wednesday mass this year after looking forward to it for so long (Grace threw up for 12 hours that day - stomach virus). Yes, I'm strange, I know. I really and truly do look forward to Lent and this year I have even craved it since right after Christmas. I also missed a Mother's Association meeting that same day that I had looked forward to since the beginning of the year. It was one of 2 meetings with speakers on the topic of NFP/Theology of the Body that our wonderful, spirit filled meeting planners came up with this year. I had really been looking forward to being there not only to hear the speaker but to see the audience's reaction to her. I'm already sold on NFP but I also always learn something from speakers on the topic and it's so important to bring Catholics back to this part of our faith that is so widely ignored and pushed aside. I digress...in that one day of disappointment I lost so much of my enthusiasm about the Lenten experience I had been thinking about and looking forward to for so long. I even thought to myself, "Well, another thing I have to give up, as if I'm not giving up enough already". Seriously? Did Jesus complain that he had given up enough already while being mocked as he hung on the cross - not to mention all that happened to him on the way there? As Jen said so well,
"I have always expected to grow closer to God on my terms. I want a sign that fits my requirements at the time and place of my choosing".And have I been to confession yet? I profess to love this season of getting closer to the Lord. Of suffering...doing things I don't want to do. Yet I haven't taken the very step that could really open up my heart to let Jesus in to do His work on me before Easter.
I'm turning over a new Lenten leaf - turning it over to my Heavenly Father to do with what He pleases. Instead of trying to control my Lenten experience, I will just try to experience Lent - however God wants me to - good, bad or ugly. And I will get to confession (now I've told all of you I really have to do it!) so that my heart and soul will be clean and inviting for the Lord to change my heart and bring it closer to His.