Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Hope Echoes--Detachment

Lent is over. Sigh of relief and longing.  I didn't get as far as I had hoped this Lent on the journey of detachment.  I have come to understand that for me Lent is best understood as a season to learn to detach, to love less the things of this world.  It is the only way to get ready for Heaven, it seems to me.

Despite my Tuesday Treasures and comfortable life, I like to believe I am not overwhelmingly worldly.  Sometimes my treasures are really more of a burden.  I am ready to lighten the load, a bit at least.  But, the problem is I live a comfortable and busy life in a first world country.  I know some sadness and some anguish, but misery, unrelieved suffering are unknown to me.  And I don't long for those things.  I want to avoid them.  I fear them if I am honest.

So I am not at all ready to chuck all my comfort and privilege and go help the people in Africa. Send a little money perhaps, but not everything.  It is not possible for me to give it all up at once.  Lent gives me that chance to practice detaching, doing without. Life itself doesn't give me much practice with that, so I am lucky that I have Lent.

But, the problem is, I didn't do as well as I had hoped this year.  I didn't do as much as I had planned.  I am still very attached to the things and comforts in my life.  The good part is.  Lent will come again.  I will have another chance next year, God willing.  And even better I have a little Lenten practice on Fridays when I am called to detach myself from something in this world.  I plan to work on that, so that next Lent I will get farther along in detaching from the things of this world and closer to Heaven.


Dawn Farias said...

I didn't do very well this Lent, either. In fact, it was downright scandalous.

Anne said...

I struggle with detachment as well. I didn't do very well this Lent either, but like you, I know that there will always be another chance next year, God willing!

Mary said...

And in my self recrimmination I have thought of a couple of commitments that I kept quite well this Lent. Baby steps and practice. That is what detachment takes.

Tami said...

Although I did well on my commitments, you point out our difficulty here in the USA. I can give up a few things, but like you say I do not know starvation, simple illnesses that could take my children's lives, war in my country, etc. One of my fellow scripture students poised this question, "I wonder what God will say to us Americans when/if we get to heaven?" I honestly wonder too. Maybe I am answering my own question, as my wondering should move me to action. Sometimes the problems seem so big though, like my little contribution would not even be a drop in the bucket.