How often do you go to the doctor for a check-up? Have you ever thought of a spiritual check-up? As Lent winds down, NOW is the perfect time to assess where you come on this year’s Lenten journey. We have one week left until Pal Sunday is upon us followed by Holy Week. It’s not too late to experience a renewal in your life.
Lent is about prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Let’s think about these essential ways to reach the true objective of Lent. What is that objective? To grow in your relationship with Jesus Christ. He is waiting for your call. He is not an overpowering Lord who demands your attention. The gift of freewill makes the attention and time we spend with him our choice.
If you have neglected your spiritual health this Lenten season, there is still time to correct this. It is not too late to fully dive in and put your whole heart and entire being into Lent. St. Ignatius of Loyola’s Daily Examen is a fantastic way to look at where you are at in your spiritual life. Meant to be used daily, let’s take a moment and apply it to the last few weeks of Lent and leverage what we find to better our journey.
Be still and pray
In this first step find a quiet place by yourself. Shut the world out so that it is just you and God. Let the silence envelope you and become aware of God’s presence. The Holy Spirit will guide you through the next steps.
Thank God for his help
Take a look back at your Lent up to this point. Have you experienced God’s blessings? If you do an honest examination, you will be surprised by what you might find. Have you kept you Lenten promises? If you have slipped along the way rejoice in the times, you picked yourself up and continued. Thank God for steering you back on the path. Thank him for providing this season and the opportunity to renew ourselves.
Examine your Lent to this point
Let’s get deeper. Think even more deeply about your Lent. When did you follow God? When did he take you by the hand and lead you? Was there a moment you found God nudging you down a certain path? Was God at work at any time in your relationships? How did he help you in your work? Was he present in a situation in your home, your domestic Church?
Ask for forgiveness
If at any time this Lent you failed, or you neglected to hear God’s small, still voice during this Lent ask Him for forgiveness. God will shower his mercy upon you and provide you with the grace to move forward on this journey. Go to confession and partake of this sacrament. Cleanse your soul and start anew for the spiritual walk ahead.
Now that you have received God’s abundant mercy and grace make a promise to improve. Prayer more often. Read more of the Bible or other quality spiritual books. Our Church is the largest library in the world with over 2000 years’ worth of books written. Take advantage of this. Spend the rest of this season fulfilling the reason for this season – growing in love for Him.