As we each continue our Lenten journey, I thought I would take a moment to reflect on the purpose of the traditional Lenten invitations to prayer, alms and fasting. That purpose is: To carve out a space inside of ourselves for God.
To create that inner space, we are asked to let go of something:
- In the Lenten invitation to more prayer, we are asked to let go of our over-activity, thus creating an inner silence in which God might commune with or communicate to us more easily.
- In the Lenten invitation to more alms, we are asked to let go of something material to which we are attached, leaving an opening in our heart for God’s Spirit to swoop in.
- In the Lenten invitation to more fasting, we are asked to let go of some habit which is not always healthy (it could be the habit of indulging in chocolate or it could be the habit of indulging in gossip). And, again, the very act of letting go of a habit creates a conscious space in our actions and routines, thus, allowing God more time and attention in our lives as we redirect those routines and habits in other directions.
I pray that we are allowing more spaces in our minds, in our hearts and in our wills for the God who wants and waits to fill us to overflowing.
May your Lenten Journey continue to be God-filling,
—Maureen Glavin, rscj