I have a headache…and I am grumpy.
My doctor had put me on a pretty strict diet prior to Lent. For several weeks prior it really wasn’t that hard. Still, I didn’t want to be overly ambitious for Lent, so I didn’t add much…just a few small things.
Beyond that I have tried to order my day and add a couple of fairly simple disciplines…mostly discipline in the timing of things that I love doing and already did with decent regularity. I simply wanted to do them more faithfully and consistently.
And, by week two I am ready to scrap the whole thing. Reality stares me starkly in the face. As my Orthodox priest friend noted in his genuinely loving way, “It’s amazing how we can do for our doctors what we won’t do for God.” To be blunt, we’ll do a lot to save our own skin but not so much for the souls of others. God help me.
We begin Lent hearing that we are dust and will return to dust, but it’s now that the reality sets in for me.
Thank God that He knows already, and He is merciful.
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
For he knows our frame;
he remembers that we are dust. (Ps. 103:10-14)