Thank God for the journey of Lent! Every year, I look forward to it and this time, I was already writing in my head what I was going to put on facebook. I was going to say that I love Lent, that I am so grateful that it comes back every year because I need it, again and again. I look at it as a yearly trek, a sort of demanding pilgrimage, a true adventure in difficult territories and that the joy of Easter is ALWAYS the goal, which is what keeps me eager to start the journey, year after year.
I was going to add that I feel well equipped, living in the heart of a large California city where I have full access to the sacraments. I already have a solid habit of turning to prayers for a variety of reasons and I planned to say many rosaries for the conversion of pro-choicers and for the conversion of Isis. I also thought about the 4 books I could read in the next 40 days and I even thought I could take a photo of them lying on my desk... I am talking about “God or nothing” by Cardinal Sarah; “Subverted” by Sue Ellen Bowder; “My badass book of Saints” by Maria Morera Johnson; “L’esprit du judaisme” by BHL. You have to admit it, these titles show I have an eclectic mind, don’t they?
Well this is when my conscience kicked in and raised a few questions. Why am I advertising how “good” I am? Isn’t it like talking about dieting as you eat a chocolate eclair? If making such a To-Do list (in my head!) makes me feel good about myself, then isn’t it just a show of good intentions? It is all fluff. It is exactly what Jesus warned us against in the parable of the righteous Pharisee and the poor penitent in the back of the temple. This is what Saint Paul admonished us against when he said that the only thing we need is LOVE, that love and patience, kindness and forgiveness is what counts. I do know, in my heart, that to grow closer to God, humility and sacrifices are essential. Oh! La la la…
The good thing about an examination of conscience is that it puts everything in in the proper perspective. So I’m not throwing the baby out with the bathwaters, I will not change ALL my plans (because positive projection is very energizing) and I’ll keep most of them (except for posting in Facebook). I will make sure to practice daily offerings of humility and gratitude in the next 40 days. And I promise to concentrate on welcoming God’s grace in my life, on focusing on God’s mercy.
PS One more question: sending a reflection to Catholic365 does not count as posting, right?