This year I have taken a very different approach to Lent, than I have in the past. I usually have my lists of what I want to accomplish during Lent. I have chosen some books and added some prayers and off to the finish line I go with my list in hand.
I decided before Lent even began that I wasn’t going to take that approach. I didn’t want it to be about lists or my accomplishments; I truly wanted to have a stronger and closer relationship with Jesus. I wanted Lent to be a time when I really got to know him, to trust him, without growing impatient in his plans for me whatever those may be and whatever suffering they may include.
I decided to read Venerable Anne Catherine Emmerich’s book, The Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. I wanted to pray and meditate on His Passion. Over the years, I have always heard that when one is having a hard time with their cross, it is good and healthy for the soul to meditate on Jesus’ Passion.
For me this is very hard as I am not courageous when it comes to seeing suffering in general, so to see or read in detail about His Passion was going to help me grow, I was hoping. About eight years ago or so, I tried reading this same book and didn’t get very far; I was too scared. I am glad to say that with the help of Jesus, I can read it now. I am about 200 pages from the end.
It’s going to sound crazy, but my goal is not to finish before Easter. I am reading it slowly and prayerfully because it is something I want to continue to do as part of my prayer. Even if I finish the book during the Easter season, I want to keep uniting my cross to his even though I know mine is tinier than His, there is no comparison.
I want my relationship with Jesus to be like it is with people I feel very close to and love. The thing that brings us closer in our relationships is our suffering and tears, which unite us.
So my hope is that this Lent has brought me closer to Jesus and that our relationship will continue to grow.
Copyright 2019 Elizabeth Estrada