Having come through difficult Advent and Christmas seasons, I look forward to Lent with an odd mix of joy, expectation and resolve to do His holy will. I'm not sure what that will entail yet, but I am ready.
At mass this morning, the little church I attend for daily mass was full to the gills. The school children were all there, K-8, their parents, the regulars and all of the faithful. Father was in fine form teaching and ministering to all ages. Slowly, slowly we received our ashes and were reminded that's where we shall return. At the end of mass, when we were sent forth to spread the good news, we were radioactive dye entering the bloodstream. With the ashes you could see us this time.
I went on with my morning: groceries, Mom's doctor, preschool pick-up, start dinner, serve lunch. Thanks to the wonders of modern media I was able to pray the rosary with Father Groschel, listen to wonderful praise music and be inspired by Johnnette Benkovic while tooling around town in the minivan. Other women in minivans sped by going the other direction, on the move for their own families. Trying their best to do their best as best they know how. The void comes in at odd times, but they fill it up with lattes and cell phones, shopping and pta. Their longing is palpable, but they ignore it. Their stress level is static electricity in the air, but they plod on.
As women we should be all about the business of lowering the bar for each other. Cut your sisters some slack. Cut yourself some slack. Only then will you be able raise the bar on your spiritual life, your eternal life and those of your dear families. God loves you.