Often, we decide to give up chocolate, jelly beans, TV, social media for Lent, and those are all noble sacrifices for Lent. But when I think about it, how does giving up chocolate compare with the extreme act of love and sacrifice of Jesus on the cross? The reality is, it does not compare and that is the point. Christ’s infinite love for us is something we cannot earn nor repay. The only thing left to do is simply accept God’s love and God’s gift by simply receiving it and saying “thank you.” That doesn’t sound like much of a response either. Of course it is not just saying “thank you” it is about being thankful.
How do we say thank you to God for the greatest act of self love in the history of the world? We say thank you by living the life he asks us to. We say thank you by becoming the person he has called us to be. We say thank you by our choices, our lifestyle, our reasons and our kindness to others. This is all God asks us to do.
How can we repay all that God has given us? We do what he asks us and perhaps even better, we reflect back his love for us in our love for him. How do you do that? Like any relationship, our relationship with God calls for conversation, sharing and spending time with. Him. If we treated our relationships with the ones we love like we do with our relationship with God, we might complain about having to go see them; we might try and spend as little time as possible; we might ignore the things a loved one asks us to do, etc., you get the idea.
Perhaps this Lent we could concentrate on improving our relationship with God, by doing the same things we do for any of our other relationships with the ones we love.