Tuesday, February 17, 2015

the side of love // let lent draw you in


Mardi Gras Tuesday.

You are here. You crept up. Or rather, I buried my head in my days and am just now peeking out. Peeking out to see you. To see that you are here to meet me before Lent. Here to encourage celebration and transition into this season that happens every year. To encourage intentional living, loving, praying, serving, and more.

He knew we would need time set apart to slow down. To be more present. To seek and be still. To spend time knowing, loving, and serving Him more fully. To embrace suffering and struggle in a different way. To enter into His Wounds more so we can know His Glory more.

Fat Tuesday. You are here.

The last three years of motherhood have influenced my Lenten offerings. Between nursing and being pregnant I've not had to put too much thought into my Lenten sacrifices. The physical and emotional state that came with constant nursing, sleep deprivation, and being pregnant took care of that part. Sure, I did little things that focused more on my behavior, presence, and attitude, but this year is different. I'm not pregnant and I'm almost completely done nursing.

Since being married and becoming a mother, I'm learning that stretching yourself in a way that helps you see differently - that helps you re-frame your present moment.  Just a little - goes a long way! Or at least for me this has been true. So when I stumbled upon this wisdom from dear Papa Emeritus, my heart leaped a little and my brain started working away on how to frame this beautiful season that is nigh.
"Lent is like a long 'retreat' during which we can turn back into ourselves and listen to the voice of God, in order to defeat the temptations of the Evil One. It is a period of spiritual 'combat' which we must experience alongside Jesus, not with pride and presumption, but using the arms of faith: prayer, listening to the word of God and penance. In this way we will be able to celebrate Easter in truth, ready to renew the promises of our Baptism." 
- Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
My last retreat was the one my husband and I went on just before marriage. Retreats, ever since I was young, move me and rejuvenate me. They stir my soul and give me energy and fervor that I may or may not have had before. Getting to retreats hasn't come easy these past three years, but framing my Lenten season as a long 'retreat' is something I can do.

This wisdom from Papa soothes my yearning heart. It pulls me into this season with a peace and calm that I'm so grateful for. This Lenten retreat I'll be taking will include sacrifices in the form of giving up certain foods, increased daily prayer time for myself, my family, and my marriage, more quiet, more reading, and a women's bible study my parish will be hosting. I'm excited for all of it. I'm excited for this season of pruning. It's always needed but I appreciate how the Church ever so gently draws us in.
"Lent stimulates us to let the Word of God penetrate our life and in this way to know the fundamental truth: who we are, where we come from, where we must go, what path we must take in life..."  
- Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
My little Lenten 'retreat' starts tomorrow. Today I will celebrate in my own little way.

Tomorrow I will start my journey for 40 days. Into the dessert. With Him. One step at a time. One day at a time. All in hopes to more fully celebrate the Truth and Goodness of Our Risen Lord come Easter.

How will you let this season draw you in?


  1. I love that quote from Papa B about Lent being a retreat! I think we often focus on the sacrificial part of Lent... of what we can't have, rather than looking at the grace that it can give to us!

    1. Isn't it such an encouraging quote, Karianna! Thanks so much for stopping by! Prayers for your Lenten season! :)


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motherhood // standing

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