each of the girls has a calendar in their room and so when the first day of lent came around they popped out and asked why there was a day on the calendar for the balls that gather on your sweater over time (lint). we sat down and to the best of my limited ability i explained what lent was. we discussed how people can either sacrifice something as an offering and as a reminder when they long for something and abstain from it that there was great sacrifice made for them and other people add something into this season, a good deed or way of honoring the sacrifice that has been made for them.
we had a good conversation and it was one of those rare moments as a mom when you think “hey, maybe i didn’t royally screw that one up!” then i said if they wanted to sacrifice or add anything to let me know and i would help them with it. i said they might want to think about it and they might not and it was fine either way but i was there if they needed any assistance.
hazel confidently stepped up and said i don’t need to think about it i know what i am going to give up. the moment prior when i felt like maybe i didn’t screw this one up was like a scoop of ice cream in the perfectly fragrant waffle cone of my dreams and this moment of hazel’s eagerness to partake was the multicolored sprinkles on top!
bwahaha. man, all the mommy scout badges i had begun to sew on my imaginary sash came ripping off and fell in the breeze at my feet. but it was a beautiful reminder of just how empty religion can be. add this, take out this, don’t say this, but do read this and always wear this and go here. a system for the sake of system is empty. i love having discussions with the girls about spiritual stuff because they will call a bluff sooner than a pompous ref at a little league game. you want me to add something? brownies! boom i’m holy. you want me to take something away? cleaning my room. bless my heaaaaart! doing something for the sake of system is empty. doing something for the sake of love and honoring what you have been created to become is breathtakingly beautiful.
what do i need to add? i need to add being around as many people that aren’t like me as possible because the temptation is to redefine normal around what my surroundings reflect. i need to hear people’s stories and let the preconceived notions i have fall to the ground with my ill-earned mommy scout badges. i need to make the good and true sacrifice of living a life that loves boldly both when it is gut-wrenchingly hard and demands incredible sacrifice to do so as well as when it is convenient and comfortable. i need to spend more time following and less time creating a system of vapor.
use this season to take a state of the union on your heart. what are you running after? what are you doing out of habit? do either bring life? how do you want to be described when you are ten years older than you are now? are you doing anything right now that would help develop you into that description. thank you hazel for making me think and for causing me to question a system in order to pursue this life to the full.