And just like that, Lent is here.
I have been pondering this liturgical season for several weeks. How much did I care to or desire to delve into it? What would I give up? What kind of spiritual practice could I take on?
I love that Pope Francis in the past has encouraged the harder things to be sacrificed. Forget chocolate, and swearing, and smoking, the Pope takes it to a higher level asking that we give up things like indifference. Why? Because Lent is not only a time to spiritually prepare for all that Easter represents and promises, but to move deeper into becoming the people God has created us to be. A 40-day surrender of something is great. It allows us to consider the ultimate sacrifice Jesus made. But that’s not the endgame. We are called to remove it from our lives forever.
I recently came upon these words written by Dax, my friend and transgender, desert sage :
Some things I am learning:
Anger, fear and hate is finite, limited and diminishing.
Love is not.
Anger, fear and hate occur when we are idle.
Love occurs with action.
The energy expended for fear/hate is the largest taxation of the soul.
The energy expended for love is replenished again and again.
It is a constant flow that does not waiver.
Love has the best exchange rate ever dealing in realities of infinite
while hate languishes and grapples and clings and begs as it dies.
Love always wins.
Unusual words to welcome Lent, but they are befitting. In these tumultuous times, we cannot afford to just refrain from our vices for a mere 40 days. What is required is spiritual transformations. These days demand we dare to peer into our own darkness, to get at the roots of our being, and rip out that which is a “taxation of the soul.”
But do we dare? Are we even capable?
This Lent, quiet your mind and examine your heart. Allow the Divine to reveal that which is preventing you from being all that God has created you to be. Is it indifference, hate, fear, or judgment? Is it prejudice, resentment, or anger?
This Lent, be replenished by Love and render your heart free of all that is a taxation of the soul.
Cling to the promise that love always wins.