For I, through the law, am dead to the law, that I may live to God: with Christ I am nailed to the cross. And I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me. And that I live now in the flesh: I live in the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered himself for me. Galatians 2:19-20
We have just finished celebrating 40 days of Lent and we walked with Christ through his Holy Passion. We have celebrated Easter in many different ways but I can safely assume those celebrations included a great deal of food and perhaps some imbibing. We now sit back and look forward to Pentecost followed by the ebbs and flows of the Liturgical Calendar until we start celebrating Advent this coming Fall and Winter.
As the weather gets warmer, many of us will start enjoying the gifts of Spring and the lazy days of summer that follow. I can just smell those burgers on the BBQ!
Sadly….as the Lenten season starts to draw to a close, many of us start to look forward to the sun and fun rather than look back at Christ’s journey and Passion. We forget about what we gave up for Lent. Many of us go back to eating meat on Friday. Fasting and abstinence is a just a memory now. We have counted down the days, the hours and the minutes to break our Lenten sacrifices that we promised Christ we would make (and many of us broke) during the Lenten season.
I will throw out a challenge to my fellow Catholics. Don’t stop with your Lenten practices. Continue with them year round. In fact, next Lenten season, add a few more and continue with those as well. I encourage you to continue to fast and practice abstinence on Friday’s. If you started a new prayer regimen, continue to keep it. If you have not, consider starting one. Better late than never! If you were practicing alms giving, then don’t stop. Continue with the practice. Even broaden it out a little more. If you have taken up praying the Holy Rosary, attending Adoration, or reciting the Divine Office, then make them a daily practice…year round. If you have taken up or increased your spiritual reading, then add a few more chapters of the bible or other spiritual books and continue to read year round. If you started attending confession, then please…continue to go to confession.
Let us not make Christ’s suffering and sacrifice a ‘seasonal thing’. Christ did not die on the cross so that we stop eating sweets or chips for a while, or to recite a few extra prayers over 40 days. Use your Lenten sacrifice as a primer to get you to experience Lent for the rest of the year. Let your sacrifice for Christ have meaning for your lived life on a daily basis. Make it your rock.
I BESEECH you therefore, brethren, by the mercy of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, pleasing unto God, your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world; but be reformed in the newness of your mind, that you may prove what is the good, and the acceptable, and the perfect will of God. Romans 12:1-2
Copyright 2016, Luciano Corbo