I almost didn’t buy flowers for my wife on Valentine’s Day.
Since it was also Ash Wednesday, we decided to defer the celebration of Valentine’s Day until the following Sunday. That way, we could focus on the fasting required on Ash Wednesday.
I spent most of the day thinking about what I was doing for Lent.
Was it enough?
Did I give up enough?
Did I plan to pray enough?
Was I ready to give more money to charity?
I, I, I . . .
Lent is a time of sacrifice offered up in unity with Christ. It is not a time to become “more spiritual” or “more religious.” It is a time of conversion. It is a time in which we shed selfishness for love.
When you turn your whole heart to the Lord, he fills it up so that it overflows with love towards others.
As I drove home from work with my wife’s favorite flowers in the passenger seat, I realized I had made the entire day all about me and not about God or other people.
That’s the danger of Lent, isn’t it? We can let the spiritual season turn us inward on ourselves rather than turn us away from sin.
This is some kind of Lenten trap set by Satan, I am sure, who goes to war on souls during this season.
Don’t let the focus on all the spiritual practices of Lent close you off from the people who need your love. Let the love of God compel you to love others.