I decided last night that I was going to start my yearly spring cleaning, and to be honest it is something that I have never enjoyed doing in the past. All of the dusting, wiping, washing, and mopping, you know what I am talking about? But I know in the back of my mind that despite the fact that I hate doing it, it is something that has to be done.
As I sat at my kitchen table writing my list of what I was going to do, I began to think and one thing that stood out at me was spring cleaning and Lent are similar. When you spring clean you are getting your house in order, cleaning it and making it ready for your family to have a spotless home. Well Lent is also a season of preparation, you are cleaning out your heart with prayer and meditation on scripture and through the Sacrament of Repentance and Reconciliation. You are preparing yourself for the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus that we celebrate on Easter.
Just as spring cleaning can be a very hard job, so can the season of Lent. When you spring clean you take everything down, and wash it, you look for any hidden dirt that can’t been seen easily. You focus on any dust that may be on your precious belongings, and you take all the time that is needed to make your home be as clean as possible.
The season of Lent should be handled in the same way, with the same intensity that you have when you spring clean. Because you are cleaning yourself up to be able to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ on Easter with a completely clean heart. During Lent you need to take as much time as is needed to stop and reflect on the past year, to think about things that you have done that you are not proud of or that you think might have offended God. You then need to take time and spend it in prayer asking God to clean out all of the bad things that we have in our hearts and minds. To give us Scripture that we can read to have a physical sign of what His desires for us are. Next you need to spend time in confession telling the Priest what you have done and with a humble heart ask him to please in God’s name give you absolution. You need to take the time to think about the pence that the Priest assigns you and as you are fulfilling it think about what you did that brought yo u to what you are doing now. Then pray and ask God to help you to be able to refrain from doing those things in the future.
Just as spring cleaning can be a long hard process, the Season of Lent is a time to focus on what we need to do to be better Catholics. This process may not be easy, but if we are true to ourselves and to God, we truly confess what we have done, then in the end it all turns out beautifully.