I know that this blog is dedicated to a discussion about faith and the environment and I will continue that discussion starting next week. But sometimes, you just can't ignore what's going on "outside the blog". Lent begins on Wednesday so, in addition to last week's tips I want to share some thoughts that are applicable to my life right now and, perhaps, to yours as well.
Change is hard. It's so much easier to keep doing what is familiar even when it's not working. People of all ages do it. Sometimes it takes the form of a dead-end job or an unhealthy relationship. Sometimes you just need to find a new mechanic or doctor that can take care of your needs better. It has been said that "insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Under that definition, many of us might be thrown into that category including myself at times!
Adjusting to changing relationships is hard too. Children growing up and spreading their wings and the changes that come with the advancing years are sometimes hard to stomach and leave us wondering what our role is. My oldest son went on his first Boy Scout campout this weekend without myself or my husband. He was on my mind throughout the weekend and many a silent prayer was offered up on his behalf. It was hard to let go of knowing what he was doing every moment but I knew it was the right thing to do. I have to admit, though, that I feel a little lost trying to figure out what my new role is. Like I said, change is hard.
But, this time of year we are called to embrace change and rely on God's grace to do so. Take some time to consider what needs to change in your life and in your heart to move you from insanity to salvation. One way to do this is through prayer. I've heard that prayer does not change God, it changes you. In my limited experience, I've found that to be true. Prayer gives me the opportunity to hear God whisper in my ear and nudge me gently down the right path. Prayer lets God know that we are willing to listen to Him and are open to His plan. Sometimes, if we're lucky, God will give us a peek into that plan.
Most of all, though, prayer helps us to make changes in our lives (or adjust to those made for us!) It helps us to recognize our sins and take action to eliminate them.
This Lent, I am challenging myself to pray more so that I will recognize my sins and have the strength to change. After all, change is hard and I need all the help I can get.
Next week: Caring for the Poor by Caring for the Earth