The exercise of Lent: Physical therapy calls for humility, patience and trust. “Walk without support for 20 feet. Lift 1-pound weights 5 times. Stretch your shoulders back 15 times. Do these actions twice daily.” It’s humbling to entrust ourselves to actions we use to cheer on young children as they learn to crawl and walk. At times we feel reduced to elementary actions that call for patience and trust that they will bring us renewed health. Such basic movements—of what value are they? Lent reminds that everyday actions can support our hearts to open wider and deeper to love. Lent challenges us to practice patience and trust that changes are happening, though imperceptibly. A hug for a child. Appreciation of a blooming plant. A psalm of pain prayed with confidence. Of such is the reign of God’s love. Of such is the exercise of Lent, event by event.
By Mary Reuter, OSB