Saturday, March 26, 2011

Sabbath Moments - Where's the Beef?

Sabbath Moments is a weekly meme hosted by Colleen at Thoughts on Grace. These are the moments when we "let go and let God" and find the "sacred in the ordinary".

Every year I make plans for Lent and rarely do the plans I make come to fruition. My "idea" of a holy Lent is to attend Mass often, pray and read the Bible more than usual, give, and try to overcome sinful habits. And this is good. There is nothing wrong with these ideas. The reality of Lent tends to be far different than my "dream" of a perfect Lent usually is. So what has my Lent REALLY been like?

 I have only been able to attend daily Mass a few times so far. Instead of receiving Communion often I've been relying on spiritual communions instead. We've had to deal with the flu, colds, and injuries on a weekly basis. Prayer has been dry and forced. God is definitely doing some spiritual pruning here. I've been through times like this before and I realize that though it may seem as if all spiritual progress has come to a standstill the opposite is usually true and these are the periods where we not only ARE making progress but we are also learning about ourselves and God at the same time. To accept God's will gracefully requires giving up our own thoughts and ideas about holiness and trusting in Him alone.

So if asked if this has been a good Lent so far I would have to say:

Yes...very.

The meat may be scarce but the fruit has been abundant.

26 comments:

  1. Amen to that! And so true! That's why it is useless for us to try to check our "progress." We really cannot. We can only love God and let Him do the rest.
    Thanks for joining me and I love the title to the post!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Colleen! Just because we can't "see" the fruit doesn't mean it's not there. God is faithful in his promises to us and it's often during what we consider the "lean" times that He is doing great things in us. We simply have to trust Him :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love the idea of giving up our own thoughts about holiness and trusting in Him alone! There was a quote I read yesterday which said we should remember what helps us to grow in holiness. I believe that while we should express sorrow for sins, we must remember that God doesn't keep records of them once we're forgiven. :) Beautiful reflection.

    ReplyDelete
  4. We humans seem to want to measure everything. I like this post because it says to me, "Lean on Me." I think St. Therese of Lisieux would say to pick one thing and do it as well as you can with love.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Jade,
    Thanks for your comment! Yes, God forgets our sins though unfortunately I sometimes have difficulty forgetting them!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Barb,
    Yeah we do! And God doesn't measure by human standards, that's for sure!

    St. Therese is my kind of saint ;)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Letting God do any kind of pruning is beneficial. Painful or not, He does know what He is doing. Blessings to you dear one much hugs!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Nice Mary. What I like most is that you recognize God's pruning. You know that he is ther in the midst of your 'broken plans'. It seems to me that you are getting exactly what he wants to teach you this lent.
    Andie

    ReplyDelete
  9. Some saints spent their whole life in spiritual darkness. Mother Theresa was apparently one. I can't imagine the kind of faith one must have to get through that. One must recognize this is a grace that God is only testing you and not abandoning you. Not sure I would fare so well over an extended period. Thankfully, God knows how much we can endure, and never tests us beyond our limits.

    ReplyDelete
  10. JBR,
    Yes, God definitely knows what He's doing. I have come to expect periods like these. Some are more difficult than others I have to admit but I know that everybody goes through this so I try to just accept it. Hugs to you too, my friend :) I hope things are going more smoothly for you today and I'm glad your mother's illness wasn't serious.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Andie,
    I didn't used to recognize it. It took me a while before I learned to see his hand in everything, especially spiritual pruning because going to church, praying, and other spiritual exercises are very good things, but we even need to be purified in this area too. Especially me because I was overly scrupulous for years and He wants to completely work that out of me. He wants us to do things for pure love :) Sometimes we think we are doing this but his idea of love and ours are quite different I think. But I'm learning :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. PG,
    Mother Theresa suffered so much! I don't know why I was surprised when I read about this - as you say some saints spend their entire lives this way. This made me appreciate her holiness even more. Thanks for your comment!

    ReplyDelete
  13. You know, I'm sure I did comment on this post already. Must have clicked the wrong button and it just vanished away.

    I'll be more careful now.

    Best wishes Mary. God bless you and yours.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I like how you say to accept God's will "gracefully" requires giving up our own thoughts. Awe, to be graceful in all things, especially in surrender..I hadn't thought of it like that before. Thank you Mary!

    ReplyDelete
  15. You know what, Victor? It's always possible that it was me who made it do a vanishing act. Lol! You know me - computers and I don't get along very well. Things have a habit of disappearing before I can read them.

    God bless you too, Victor :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. DG,
    He certainly knows better than we do what is good for us :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Sometimes "no beef" is the meatiest part of the journey:)) Glad you are enjoying this beautiful Liturgical season, Mary:))

    ReplyDelete
  18. Great post Mary. I've been struggling lately thinking that I'm failing in my Lenten journey.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Came back by to give you another hug dear Mary. Blessings.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Thanks Diana! God brings good even out of our failures if we put in honest effort!

    ReplyDelete
  21. JBR,
    You are so sweet! It's funny how you always seem to leave little messages that touch me on the days I feel a bit down. I twisted my knee last night and was feeling frustrated and in pain but your comment lifted my spirits and made me smile. Hugs to you too, my friend :)

    ReplyDelete
  22. Dear one, thank you for your recent prayers for me. Blessings.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Do hope your knee is better. Blessings and safe hugs.

    ReplyDelete
  24. You're welcome, JBR. To be honest, I enjoy praying for you. I have a soft spot for you and I believe the Lord put it there :)

    Yes, my knee is better! Hugs to you too!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Blessings dear Mary! Thank you for your prayers.

    ReplyDelete