Today we begin the 14th day of our Lenten journey. Four weeks from today we will be in Holy Week. I think this is a pivotal week in our Lenten journey. One of two things may be happening now: One is that you are having a very good Lent. You set prayerful goals, you have struggled but you are keeping them.
However, another option is that you are struggling. Lent snuck up on you and you never made clear, prayerful goals. You gave in and ate a whole sleeve of Girl Scout cookies one day. You got up for early morning prayer the two days after Ash Wednesday but not so much anymore. Several of the disciplines or fasts you have thrown out the window. You fussed at your children or spouse. Many of us have a perfectionist side and we think if we can do something just as we want we should just throw in the towel or hit the ctrl+alt+delete on our Lent.
Well, being from Georgia I would like to borrow a phrase from the UGA Bulldogs. “Hunker down!” This is “hunker down” time in Lent. You still have four weeks until Holy Week and then the Sacred Triduum to lead you into a glorious Easter. Now is not the time to quit but to double down.
Have you struggled with sin, with prayer, with discipline? That means that you are human. Jesus does not expect you to be perfect by the end of Lent but he does expect you to grow and to try. Take a fresh look at your Lenten commitments. Where does the Holy Spirit want you to adjust; perhaps to lighten the load or perhaps to raise the bar?
I hope you will also plan on making a good Confession before Easter. Today we hear “Wash yourselves clean. Put away your misdeeds from before my eyes; cease doing evil, learn to do good.” The grace of the Sacrament of Reconciliation is important for our Lenten journey. Press on! Persevere! We are into the race of Lent! Let us run the race well!
“Come now, let is set things right, says the Lord: Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; Though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool. “
Fr. Tim McKeown is in his 18th year serving as a priest for the Diocese of Savannah. He serves the communities of Brunswick, Darien and Jekyll Island in Georgia. When he is not fishing for men, he can be found fishing for fish.