The Season of Lent, which we began this past Ash Wednesday, is not just a time to fast from food and abstain from meat (please see last Sunday’s bulletin, February 11). Indeed, prayer, fasting and almsgiving help us to grow in the virtues of faith, hope and love (Matthew 6:1-18) – our Lenten practices draw us into living the two great Commandments, love of God and love of neighbor.
Thus, we might:
– Fast from judging others (we do judge actions, what is right and wrong, but not persons) because we love every one of God’s children made in His image and likeness.
– Fast from focusing on problems because we love focusing on solutions.
– Fast from thoughts of illness because we love the healing power of God (for example, in the Sacraments of Confession and Anointing of the Sick).
– Fast from words that pollute because we love words that call us to purity.
– Fast from complaining and grumbling because we love being grateful.
– Fast from anger and impatience because we love serenity and patience.
– Fast from pessimism because we love being optimistic.
– Fast from worry because we love to trust in Jesus and His Divine Mercy.
– Fast from destructive criticism because we love constructive criticism.
– Fast from resentment and bitterness because we love being forgiving and merciful.
– Fast from self-concern because we love being compassionate toward others.
– Fast from discouragement because we love focusing on Christian faith, hope and love.
– Fast from pride and disobedience because we love being humble and obedient servants of Jesus Christ, the Only Savior of the world.
Fast. Why? Because we love Jesus Christ, Who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
With prayers in Christ for a blessed and fruitful Lent,