Wednesday, March 5, 2014
an extraordinary little boy and Lent....
As a child, I am sure that I wasn't crazy about Lent.The purpleness of it, the deprivation.As a sacrifice, we were to find something that we loved,a disordered attachment, and for 40 days,fore swear it.If Christ could hang on the cross, we could do this,we were told.And we did.
I might have been ten or eleven when I gave up the Lone Ranger, a radio show,my absolute favorite.Looking forward to that Tuesday night half hour had been such a joy to me;what would take its place?To make matters worse,that Lenten season, as if to salt the wound even more,one episode covered why the mask and why the Indian companion.I stood firm,didn't listen and still do not know the answers to those very important questions.And then there was the Lent that started in frigid February and my friend Rosie and I hoofed it every morning in the dark to morning Mass.We lasted three weeks ,I wonder if I could do that now,loving my warm bed as I do.Maybe,I should give up my bed and sleep in the yard this year.
Today,my heavily sugared coffee is off limits as is the computer 'til after noon.I have no doubt that my attachment to these is out of control.The point is to depend on God for everything.I actually believe in the discipline of Lent.It is good for the soul and self esteem to have some control over our appetites.Maybe that is why I have been able to give up meat,chicken etc.I have been schooled in the desert spirituality of simplicity,less and sacrifice.For what is a Christian but one whose aim is to put God and others first ?This goes against our nature,surely.
There is a story on-line now about an 8 year old boy who found 20 dollars in the parking lot of a McDonalds.He knew where this money was going-a video game.And then he walked in and saw a veteran.Getting a pencil, he wrote a note to that man and put the 20 dollars in it and handed to him.His Dad had been a soldier who never came home.That outward generous love humbles me.This is the path of Lent.