I have to say that although I did not make blogging regularly a Lenten goal this year like I did last year, I still thought I would be able to blog more frequently as I spent my time in prayer and reflection. Alas, that didn’t happen. Instead, I have found myself at war with the devil.
For the first few weeks of Lent, things seemed to have started off smoothly. I was doing great on the very low calorie diet with fasting. I was doing daily morning prayer and scripture reading. I was taking part in the Sacraments like Mass and reconciliation and attended adoration when possible and all seemed to be going well. I was comfortable with where I was and with whom I was. But, I should have known better. When you are feeling good about yourself, that is EXACTLY when Satan starts in on us. And he is so sneaky! He slips in the little crevices of your life so that you don’t even realize that he is there for a bit. Then, when you do know something is off, it is still hard to pinpoint exactly what is the issue. You just know something is wrong.
So, if you are anything like me, you try to address it. I thought progress was being made and things would improve. And they did. For 2 days, things were spectacular again. But, then the big one hits. That is when you realize the earlier shakiness you felt were just warning tremors. This one is the main earthquake with a 7 or 8 level of devastation. Everything around you that you believed about the world and your life has suddenly come tumbling down around you and you realize that nothing is as solid as you thought it was.
Again, if you are anything like me, you sit and look around at the devastation and realize that nothing is going to be the same again. Period. And so you grieve. And you feel sorry for yourself. And you want to scream at everyone that it just isn’t fair, that you didn’t ask for this. And you wonder why nothing ever goes right for you. Why would God do this to you?
But then, with the help of a good friend, you realize that you don’t want to let Satan win this war. You are willing to put aside your own feelings of pain and to fight with everything you have against Satan’s plan. And so you go to war, battling as fiercely as you can.
I don’t know about any of you, but war is tiring. And when I get tired, I start wanting to give up. I start wanting to remember my pain and how unfair that it all is. I start focusing once again on the ‘me’ as victim and getting angry again. And once again, I find myself as weak as a kitten.
The only strength any of us have in this war isn’t ours. It is our compassionate Lord’s strength. For without His grace, I know I would be in that puddle on the floor crying my eyes out with the injustice of this world. With His grace, I can and will hold my chin high and fight for that glimpse of heaven.
This is what I have learned this Lent. And it is way more powerful than anything I ever set out to do during these 40 days.