on not being ready, silence, and Lent.

on not being ready, silence, and lentSuffice it to say that sometimes (read: often) my mind is a jumbled mess of thoughts. By the grace of God this jumbled mess of thoughts occasionally leads to some sort of epiphany. So it is with this post. I thought about splitting into three different posts: one on not being ready, one on Lent, and one on silence, but to do so I would have had to separate the jumbled mess and perhaps denied the overall beauty of the revelation.

One night this past week I decided to shower in the evening and do so without blaring jamming to music. Whether I’m showering in the morning or the evening, I always have my phone playing music. But for some reason or another, I decided to shower in silence. Rather than belting out my own set of tunes, I tried (and mostly failed) to quiet my thoughts and just be. My thoughts in this time of silence bounced between three topics:

  1. Silence (and how royally I was failing to be quiet)
  2. Lent
  3. Not being ready for things

Enter this blog post.

I kept thinking about how lent is just around the corner and how I have no idea what I’m giving up this year. I thought that this year I’d be even more excited for lent because it meant that so many things were getting closer: my anniversary with Anthony (which is the second Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday, and the day that Popes John XXIII and John Paul II will be canonized), and especially our marriage, not to mention the fact that lent is perhaps my favorite liturgical season (yes, I’ve thought about it). Yet, with the beginning of lent mere days away, I couldn’t help but think that I simply wasn’t ready for it to be here. In fact, there are so many things I’m simply not ready for. I’m not ready for lent, countless wedding things, marriage, Easter, first communions at work (175 kids?!), writing seven posts in seven days, and so much more. But then it hit me: that’s life. Life doesn’t come at you when you are ready, it just comes at you.

Remember when you were a kid and you used to play hide-and-seek? Whoever was ‘it’ usually counted down and then yelled something like, “Ready or not, here I come!” Well folks, that’s life. Life happens when we aren’t ready and we deal with things as they come. But in so many ways that is where all the beauty happens: in the unexpected, not prepared for moments. Writing seven new posts in seven days stretched me, but here we are after a week and I did it. They may not have been perfect, but I feel like I’ve grown because of them. My wedding day will come whether I’m ready for it or not. Marriage prep will do all it can to prepare me for marriage, but it is coming, whether I think I’m 100% ready (is that even possible?) or not. Lent is coming whether I’m ready for it or not. But our readiness isn’t really what matters. What matters is our ability and willingness to learn as we go, and grow as we go.

After I had this little epiphany I suddenly remembered that I was supposed to be being silent, simply resting after a particularly stressful day, resting in the arms of God. And yet here I was, soapy goodness being rinsed out of my hair and anything but silent. Then it came full circle: last year I tried (and failed) to be completely silent for 15 minutes a day. No bible, no rosary, no music playing, no driving, nothing but me and God. I lasted all of three days before the silence got cut down to five or ten minutes. Perhaps two weeks into lent I’d given up the practice all together. With lent on the horizon and my mind as busy as ever, ready or not, I’m committing to 15 minutes of daily silence again, come what may. It may not be perfect and I may not be ready for it, but it is coming anyway and I’m resolved to learn and grow as I go. Bring on the silence.

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