The season of Lent is over, and I feel it necessary to tell something of my experience.
I have had a very special trial this Lent, either by God's choice, diabolical influence, or the twists and turns of my own life. I don't think I have done as good as I could have.
I am reminded this Lent of how far I've really not come after all. How really weak I am. It's a sobering realization.
I don't wish to embark on a tale of woe and false humility and what a depraved human being I am. Any good Christian knows how much we need God and I think it would be a useless gesture to get on the pulpit about it now. I only wish to tell a story.
I've realized that I still have addictions. Addictions to the Internet I thought I left behind. I like watching Internet videos, so I gave them up for Lent. Turns out I've probably cheated on that a dozen times.
I'm not sure why but all of Lent I was also more tempted than I'd been in a long time to sexual impurity of all sorts, even new things I hadn't been tempted to before. I don't mind admitting it, after all, who is not tempted in some form? But for whatever reason the temptation to do something, anything, was heavy on my mind. I didn't do anything, though. Thank God for that.
I find I welcome temptations much more often than I should. Details would take forever to impart but suffice it to say I stink at avoiding near occasions of sin. I walk the line and never cross it, but I should be staying away, far away. It sends the message to me that I don't take it seriously enough. I love my faith and I love fighting for heaven, but actions speak louder than words. If I really cared as much as I say I do, I would never even come close to doing something...stupid.
I'm also still very crabby sometimes. I am very impatient with people. I expect something and if I get something very far from that it's hard for me to be civil. When people talk to me while I'm eating and reading a book and just want to be left alone, I don't try to make conversation. Whenever I've been really upset and just don't want to talk to people, I'm very cold. When someone stole my pot and then took down the signs I put up politely asking for it back, I just ignored everyone. When people wake me up and don't seem to care, when they accuse me of things that they are responsible for, when no one seems to care that I'm having a problem they're causing, I just don't do what the saints do. I don't act out of perfect love. I act out of half-assed love.
I am left this Lent feeling pretty inadequate. I feel like an inadequate boyfriend because of my lack of new ideas for us and my general bouts of bad moods. I feel like an inadequate friend because I can't meet up with everyone I want to and I haven't been such a nice guy. I feel like an inadequate Catholic because I don't have genuine prayer, I have little faith, and I don't know if I'm growing in virtue. I feel inadequate in preparing for my future for the lack of responsibility and progress I've made in building my future.
I am inadequate. God help me.
There was a dream that I dreamed, a dream far beyond my trial this Lent.