Has anyone asked you yet, what are you doing for Lent?
We might have come into Lent in a sort of automatic mode, where we follow the required practices of fasting and abstinence and decide that is enough. Maybe we have chosen to do better, to do more. Regardless though, I wonder if we might be asking ourselves the wrong question. Perhaps the question to ask is, Where is God leading you this Lent?
At the beginning of Lent, we hear how Jesus was led into the desert by the Holy Spirit. There He went to be tempted by the devil and ministered to by angels. Even Jesus, who is God, did not choose His own path. He chose the path set before Him by the Father. The Church sets a path before us, a set of rules that we must follow. This part is easy; we know who we follow. Anything more than that must be discerned.
What a temptation it is for us to make our own way! In a world of self-help gurus and self-realization promises, how hard it is for us to say, “My help comes from the Lord” (Psalm 121:2). How hard it is for us to trust and wait for Him to show us the way.
But remember… who knows us better than we know ourselves? Who knows the future? Who is THE WAY?
Perhaps, falling for a misguided zeal for holiness, we ended up taking on practices and sacrifices that God did not intend for us. While the shadow of the ashes is still on our foreheads as we begin our travel through the desert of Lent, we should pause for a moment and examine who is leading us this way. And if the answer is not Jesus, let us turn around and follow Him… it is never too late.