Gaining a New Perspective
I’ve never been a proponent of procrastination. In fact, the more I detest a chore or activity, the quicker I’m likely to attack it with gusto. I reason that the relief I’ll feel once it’s completed will far outweigh the displeasure of performing the task at hand. If there are ten hours worth of chores, two of which fall in a category I dislike—such as painting, wrapping gifts, and yard work—I’ll cram all of it into one eight-hour day. And, I tend to impose this approach on those around me. I apply this strategy to every area of my life…except when it comes to writing my column.
I put it off until the bitter end. I call it “the monkey on my back!” I think I dread the idea that I believe I must come up with something completely new and/or profound. But delaying the inevitable and believing it’s a chore makes it even harder to write.
This realization has fueled my decision to—from this time forward and not just for Lent—change my mind and broach future columns not as a challenge but as my God-given chance to connect with you, the reader.
There’s a lot of spiritual commentary out there, so who am I to think I can offer something profound? As we prepare to journey to the foot of the cross for Lent, reminders of our shortcomings seem to come up during the season and can motivate us to replenish our spiritual arsenal and seek Christ with renewed fervor and authenticity.
In being self-aware and accepting my own limitations, I’ll shift my attention toward sincere connection. If I offer heartfelt reflections, timely updates, and familial anecdotes that mostly aim to be funny, I hope some inspirational nugget will resonate with you along the way.
I close with this quotation from Pope Benedict XVI, one that speaks to the underlying meaning of the holy season of Lent, which begins this year on March 6.
Distributing ashes is an invitation to repentance, to humility, to remembering one’s own moral condition, not in order to end up in desperation, but in order to welcome—precisely in our mortality—the unimaginable nearness of God.
Pope Benedict XVI
Ash Wednesday Mass, 2012