A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Choosing to Change

Posted on: February 19, 2015

I may look relaxed on the outside, but I generally feel like I should be doing something. Feeling like a coiled spring has taken its toll, but with the help of physiotherapy, massage and yoga, I’m already starting to feel better.

The first step was choosing to change. And the same holds true for our spiritual health.

As our parish priest pointed out at last night’s Ash Wednesday service, we have a choice to make: we can be the same people at the end of Lent as we are now, or we can choose to examine our lives and make changes during Lent, with God’s help:

  • We can look at how we spend our time. Are we working so many hours that we seldom sit down to dinner with our family?
  • We can consider our relationships. How do we speak to our spouse and children? Do we use our words to build them up or tear them down?
  • We can think about how we use our material blessings. Do we have so much stuff that decluttering is always on the menu? Do we give to our church and to charity?

Lent offers us a great opportunity for a spiritual “house cleaning”—the chance to work on giving up bad habits and establishing good habits that help us make better use of our time, treasure and talents and bring us closer to our family and to God.

I pray that we would decide to be changed people at the end of Lent and that we would let God show us the ways he would have us change.

Go where thou wilt, seek what thou wilt, and thou shalt not find a higher way above, nor a safer way below than the way of the Holy Cross.

~ Thomas à Kempis, quoted in “Celebrate February 2015,” Catholic Digest, January/February 2015

For some ways to observe Lent through penance, prayer and almsgiving, see this checklist on the Held By His Pierced Hands blog.

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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