Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Lenten Journey 2012- Keeping it simple

I feel like every year, God is calling me (and our budding family) into a slightly different direction for lent. It's above all, a time for spiritual renewal and who knows what areas we need most renewal in, but God.  I try to let go of taking control of the season and let God direct our family.

Our Lent is far from rigorous.  Rather it conforms with the flow (or lack there of) of our hectic lives as parents of young children- already on a new journey of healthy eating that is changing the way we live our lives.   I have including some of that program into our Lenten journey- hoping we see it not so much a "diet" this 40 days, but a sacrifice we can do for Jesus (as I keep reminding myself and the children!).    Since there is no older children to help with all the kitchen preparing, cooking and dishes which take up much of the day and until late at night, we have little time for all the extra outings of daily Mass, stations of the cross and acts of charity that would also make a Lent holy. It's a sacrifice to be sure, but I try to make it a time of prayer by playing a rosary cd or having silence to reflect. 

Some other little things we have added are:
  1.  Free printable Lenten Reflections for Children
  2. Salt dough crown of thorns
  3. Lenten Journey coloring page (from Catholic Icing)
  4. Wooden candle holder to show journey
  5. Lenten children books and books on Sacred art for Lent
The things I have chosen as my personal sacrifices and charity are really minimal.  I think that is a very personal decision. I don't feel God calling me to make any more sacrifices and acts of charity than the two I have decided on.  I think God knows I am already spread thin...just making the daily acts of charity and sacrifices a true offering would be more meritorious than anything extra sacrifices I could do for these forty days.   I think God calls us each to make different degrees of sacrifices, acts of charity, alms giving and penance. It's important I don't compare myself to others and despair in my humble offerings.  It's easy to do while reading blogs about what everyone else is doing!

Perhaps above all, God is calling me to patience with myself.  My life will not be the perfectly scheduled, perfectly organized, and perfectly clean life that I would like it to be. It's not the time for that. It's the time for messy babies who need to be changed after every eating, floors that don't stay clean for more than 30 minutes, books that never stay on the shelf, dishes that don't clean themselves, children who are always in need of something.  This all can make a very meritorious lent.  It's what I do with it that can bring a stressful situation or the crown of glory.

1 comment:

noreen said...

Hi Sarah, I agree with keeping Lent simple which makes it more sincere or perhaps genuine is a better word? Thanks for the links to the Lenten activities.