by Father David Kirk
A preface about Lent:
People “give up” things during lent:
Pizza, beer, lobster, whatever.
But does it move us closer to God,
Closer to one another, to ourselves?
Maybe what we should work on at Lent
Is CHANGING ATTITUDES.
Leaving behind frustrations, fears,
Which box in others.
TO GIVE UP NEGATIVE, DEFEATIST ATTITUDES
To see temporary setbacks as permanent
To escalate disappointment into catastrophe
To experience problems as insurmountable.
To try to see other possibilities
When things don’t go as we had hoped or planned.
Sometimes I set myself up to feel like a failure
Or to feel badly
About things I cannot control;
And I get out of this only by deciding
That if things can’t be one way,
Well, maybe they can be another.
Its possible, I think, even for me,
To still make inner changes,
To move old emotional garbage out
To see the world in a whole new way,
To come closer to God.
So I’m not sure what I’m giving up this Lent
But I think its
I think I learned this attitude
At an early age,
As a lonely adolescent,
As a young man whose people die young,
Whose sister died of alcoholism.
But God keeps seeking me, the lost lamb,
And in intervening in my life
Converting all these things into HOPE.
So I put all hopelessness on the altar
As a sacrifice to faith and joy.
As God Lives in me, I determine who I am.
*Reposted from Ash Wednesday 2009.