We all know that the season of Lent is about conversion and change. We are called to turn away from sin and become more and more like Christ. In other words, we are called to grow.
Many times in the Gospels Jesus talks about seeds and trees, fruit and branches. Jesus tells stories about farmers and fields. When looked through the lens of growth, our call to conversion and change is about new life. For me that puts a different spin on Lent. So often I beat myself up during Lent. I don’t do enough. I don’t sacrifice enough. I don’t see miraculous changes. I don’t experience earth-shattering conversions. Thinking about conversion and change in terms of growth leads me to focus positively on life – the life that Jesus came to bring us all!
Coming from Southern Minnesota farm country, I know that there are many things that work together to bring about growth. In these Lenten days I invite you to join with me in centering on these three ideas.
1) Seeds need good ground in which to sprout.
During Lent I can tend to the soil of my heart. Do I need be more attentive to my prayer routine? Do I need to clear my life of sinful habits? Do I need to enrich myself through Holy Reading?
2) Seeds need time to grow.
During Lent I can spend more time with the Great Gardener. Do I need to spend more quiet time alone with God? Do I need to trust God and let things be…not getting frustrated…not forcing growth before its time?
3) Seeds become something different.
During Lent I can expect that I will bloom into something beautiful. Do I need to let go of fears of growth and change? Do I need to give myself more completely to God? Do I need to trust God’s dreams for my life?
Lent is a time of preparing and becoming. It is a time of letting go and experiencing. It is about God’s action in our lives. May this Lent be a true season of growing!
Sister Lisa Maurer
Sister Lisa Maurer was born and raised in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota. Before entering the Monastery, she taught and coached in Catholic Schools within the New Ulm Diocese. Sister Lisa made her first Monastic Profession in August 2009 and on July 11, 2012, she made her Perpetual Profession. Her first ministry was working at the parishes of St. Lawrence and St. Joseph in Duluth. Currently she is the Mission Integration Manager of the Benedictine Health System.See all of Sister Lisa’s posts.