Lent. We all know it, we all have mixed feelings about it. But the truth of the matter is that, in a mere thirty five minutes, Lent 2015 starts.
What's the point? Why not eat meat, give extra money away, pray more and toss the Alleluia and Glory to God out the window?
We'll walk around with ashes on our heads and a little spot in our hearts wishing that Easter was already here so we could indulge in that chocolate that we've been craving all week. And let's not even talk about the Catholic phenomena about how McDonald's hamburgers never sound good until a Friday during Lent.
But if it's all just mortification and the ever present message that we're going to die some day in the not-so-far future, why even do Lent? It can be depressing, and the weight of the sacrifice can feel incredibly heavy sometimes. And if it's all for naught anyway, why even bother.
I'll let someone with a much more rich theological knowledge help out:
"Through fasting and praying, we allow Him to come and satisfy the deepest hunger that we experience in the depths of our being: the hunger and thirst for God" - Pope Benedict XVI.
The Deepest Hunger.
But how true! We hunger for food because in this world there is food that will fill our stomachs and stop the hunger. We thirst because in this world there is water (or coffee, whatever the case may be) to quench our physical thirst.
A passion and desire that God has for us to be with Him that is so great that he He wants to consume our very lives with it's power.
Not just six hours of our lives until Easter. Don't let your lent become something you do when it's convenient or when you happen to be at Mass on Sunday.
God is crazy in love with you. And not the feel good warm fuzzy love. The beaten to an inch of his life, thrown down and nailed on a cross, take every sin that was and will be onto his soul and lay it all out for YOU.
God thinks you are worth pursuing.
And what a beautiful opportunity Lent is - the chance to connect your suffering to the cross and relieve the burden of sin from Our Lord's back! The beauty of a crucifixion that exists outside of the human concept of time is the ability that we have to connect our suffering to Christ's as He hangs on the cross for you.
Don't let this Lent pass you by. Don't sit in the pew on Easter morning and think "Man, Lent went by fast this year! I missed the chance to do anything...again." Seize this Lent as a chance to become a better version of you (thank you Matthew Kelly) and become fully alive.
"The world offers you comfort but you are not made for comfort. You are made for greatness." - Pope Benedict XVI.
Let's make this a GREAT Lent.