The first Lent that ever really meant something to me, the first that truly impacted my life was 10 years ago. I describe that Lent as starting something new in me. I can describe this Lent similarly.
This Lent has been entirely different from any other experience I've had. A complete re-model, a re-do, a building up and starting over. The difference between this Lent as starting something new in me and the first Lent that started something new in me was that 10 years ago, I went after the change and decided to be someone different. This Lent, the change was not my idea, at least not to the extent and in the way that I am receiving it.
Maybe that is the real difference, most Lents I go after, I give and sacrifice, but this Lent I am receiving. Isn't that truly what Good Friday is about anyway? Receiving the Body and Blood of the Lord as He gives Himself up for and to us. I've started receiving Him in a new way. And it wasn't my idea or my doing. I thought I was going on the good way already-- my prayer life was vibrant, my faith flowed over into every other aspect of my life, I've consistently put love of the Lord above everything else in my life and not capriciously, but sincerely and truly.
Yet I find all of this melting away around me.
Something new really is begun in me and really it started before Lent. It began with this someone new growing inside of me and as this child grows so am I. And it is not just the change of becoming a mother, it is a breaking down of everything I have ever know spiritually and building it all back up into something deeper and truer. My desires, for life and faith and God, are melting away, my reasonings for those things are melting away, my habits in those things are melting away. Life and God as I knew them are melting away. And I am happy.
I do not know where this change is taking me, I do not know where it leads. Sometimes it feels dark, disturbing, and never-ending. But mostly it just feels like a washing away to white. "They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb" (Revelation 7:14).
Today nothing spectacular is going on in my life and I don't expect that anything will. I have no big sacrifice to offer today, have no most excellent way of prayer, nothing. So I just stand at the foot of the cross and allow the Blood of my Lord to wash over me. It's what He wants. It's why He gave His Blood. He wants this for all of us.