Rended Hearts, Not Garments: Thinking About Lent

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Most years I just dread Lent. Feet dragging, temper-tantrum throwing, dread. This year, though, I could not be more ready. The events of the last month have taken a major toll on me and I am ready for a period of pulling away from the world and holding on to Christ for dear life.

As part of my birthday present from Atticus, I got to spend an hour by myself at adoration on Saturday. It was so wonderful, and had been shamefully long since I’d been. There’s just no substitute for time with God.

I have spent far too much time lately arguing with people on and not nearly enough time talking with God. You all know how it is. When your day starts with the internet instead of prayer, it’s going to lack balance.

Lent can’t come soon enough this year, though I was grateful to be able to indulge in birthday celebration before Ash Wednesday. Now that I got that bottle reasonably sized glass of champagne out of my system, I am ready for some penitence.

Thus, a family plan. And a personal plan.

These are my personal goals:

Morning offering and/or Magnificat morning prayer said over my coffee each morning

Read Magnificat daily reflection and Mass readings each day during Maggie’s nap

Pray rosary every Friday of Lent

Stay off of Facebook (other than to add my posts from here and IGNITUM TODAY)

Complete one spiritual book during Lent (I haven’t chosen one yet, and I’d love a suggestion!)

And we have some family goals as well:

Bedtime prayers with Maggie each night (which we have been doing really well with lately)

Atticus and I read a reflection from one of the following books each evening

The Joy of Knowing Christ: Meditations on the Gospels


The King, Crucified And Risen: Meditations On The Passion And Glory Of Christ (Daily Readings from Ash Wednesday to Divine Mercy Sunday)

I also want to do something special with Maggie for Lent, so I found a few books which look good. I’m hoping to choose one or two.

The Gospel for Little Ones

and this one:

My First Pictures of Easter

We have two other books by this author and I love them!

We are also going to fast from meat on all of the Wednesdays of Lent in addition to Fridays. It’s a little extra penance, and it also helps us to remember that for most of the world’s population, meat is a luxury which they do not daily have.

I’m putting together a post with some of my favorite meatless recipes, and I hope to have it up by Ash Wednesday or shortly after. Basically, buy a lot of beans! Beans and eggs.

Now it’s your turn. What are your plans for Lent? Do you have any suggestions for spiritual reading or kids books about Lent/Easter? Inquiring minds want to know!

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  • Louise

    I love all of your plans! Mine are still being finalized…I know there will be a food component, and a Facebook component (sigh), and a prayer component. And hopefully a blog component — it’s in the works! I love the idea of doing a Lent activity with Maggie. I need to get some more religious books for Elise. We have a few, and they are nice, but in some ways overly-cutesy. So I appreciate the author recommendation!

  • Michelle

    I have my lent post up as well. :)

    Love your goals and I am with you! Ready to spend more time with God than I do on Facebook!!

  • Elizabeth @ Coppertop Kitchen

    Oh, good idea! I like the idea of a Rosary on Fridays; I’ll probably join you for that. I’m waking up an hour earlier each morning in order to pray and write, helping to coordinate Lenten vespers and Eucharistic adoration at my parish, adding an extra daily Mass each week, and living without electronics (and electric lights) one night each week. I’m particularly excited about that last one. I’m also reading “Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist,” and hope to host a Seder when I get done! If you haven’t already read that, maybe we could read it together! Julia’s reading too :)

  • Pat

    Thank you for the inspiration to do something special for Lent. St. Andrew UMC is having special Lenten study groups that will use the book The Story. It is a chronological “Bible” that has lengthy passages from the NIV Bible connected by summaries of the omitted passages. I have a copy. I need a goal to read a certain number of pages per day.

  • Sarah

    I just found your blog through catholic mothers online and it is great. My plans are still being finialized. However, I have taken the first steps I deactivated my facebook

    and I have started reading a book. The title of the book is Surrender!: The Life-Changing Power of Doing God’s Will By: Father Larry Richards. So far it is great. I will give you a warning he will take you out of your comfort zone.

  • Elizabeth @ Coppertop Kitchen

    So, um, hey… don’t buy that first pictures of Easter book for Maggie. That really seems like something that a pious and enterprising godmother should be allowed to do. *wink wink*