All things-- even the hard and seemingly bad things-- work for the good of those who love God. I want to encourage you this lent, if you are going through a hard time, if you are experiencing a great loss, or things just are just not going the way you would have hoped, give it to God. This can be your sacrifice for lent: To give your heartache to God and to put your full confidence in Him, trusting that He has a Good Plan for your life, no matter what twists and turns appear along the way.
The twists and turns of life are many, and we can never be sure of where God may lead us. I think that the moment that we start thinking we are sure of what will happen next in life and stop believing that God can surprise us, the moment when we feel that we have it all figured out and think we no longer need God... I think that's when we are in trouble. We need to continually give God the benefit of believing that His hand is leading us, and to accept that it's okay to feel in suspense and unsure of what will happen next.
This post is for all those of you who are feeling in suspense, disappointed, or in the middle of great suffering this lent. What a joy to know that you are able to suffer at the foot of the cross, and even place yourself on the cross with Jesus. There you will find strength and comfort, and know that you truly are not alone. Because He is suffering, too, and He is carrying this with you.
At the beginning of lent, I felt guilty when someone asked me what I gave up for lent. I have been going through some hard things lately that I forgot to choose something. In the past, like many others, I have given up sweets or certain things I love to indulge in, or committed to doing kind acts for others. But this time, I felt at a loss and as though I had nothing left to give. But one of the greatest comforts for me was when I realized that I can offer my suffering to God as my lent sacrifice. I know this sounds so basic, but for me, it's been everything-- knowing that I can suffer not just for nothing, but for God.
When you feel like you cannot carry your burden any longer, bring it to God in prayer. Stay with Him in front of the Holy Eucharist, attend mass often, and just keep going, one day at a time, one foot in front of the other. Before you know it, it will stop raining, and light will come shining through. And He will show you that sure enough, Amazing Things Can Happen. Grow in this confidence that He has a good, good plan for your life, and that when you go through struggles in life, even these can work toward your good when you give it to Him. Hang in there, friend.
With so much love,