I thought when I was visiting the girls in the Dominican Republic that I would be the one providing love. It turns out that the girls had much more to teach me about love than I did for them. The girls were so open to me from the first moment that I sat down on the floor with them. They have such generosity in giving of themselves. I quickly realize that this relationship isn't just one way. To truly love these girls you have to allow yourself to be loved by them.
As we look forward to the start of Lent next week most of us have given at least some thought about what we are going to “give up for Lent”. However we have a question for you as you consider your Lenten practice. “Is what you are doing for in Lent based on Love?” As odd as it may sound at first, Lent is all about Love, it is a time of preparation for the greatest love of all. “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (Jn 15:13 RSV).
Lent is not just about giving things up or simply praying more, which are both good things. It is a journey in love to Love. If the journey of Lent is made in love then we become more loving, more conformed to Christ. "I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35 NABRE). This Lent let us not be marked simply by ashes on Ash Wednesday but by our love for one another.