I sunk a little lower in my seat while I listened to a priest speak to a gathering of priests at All Saints Cathedral in Halifax. He said its simple; God wants us to pray just a little every day, fifteen minutes in the morning and fifteen minutes in the evening. That’s all, just try that. Too busy? He told us that the average North American watches over six hours of TV every day. Still think you’re too busy?
I try and do something for Lent, either giving something up or taking something on. A couple of years ago, someone asked me what I was doing for Lent. I had forgotten. I said to myself that I was too busy to even give something up for Lent. Not too busy for TV, just too busy for God.
Clergy are really good at making themselves busy, or at least giving the impression that they are busy. There is the story of the priest who never takes a day off and tells people that it’s because the devil never take a day off. The wise parishioner advises the priest to choose a better role model. I mean, even God rested on the seventh day.
The seasons of the Church year were not created for God’s benefit, but for ours. These times are to help us become more fully aware of God’s presence in our lives. The Lenten discipline is not intended to be a burden but more like an exercise that builds our strengths and skills. The result is a life lived for fully in God’s presence. I know how difficult it can be to do the small, simple things that bring us great benefits, but observing a holy Lent is something that brings tangible joy. This Lent, don’t be too busy for God’s joy.