We’re a little more than halfway through Lent, and are you feeling like you need a little pep talk? Maybe you were faithful to your prayer routine but now it’s falling by the wayside. Or you feel like you can’t wait another few weeks to get back that particular thing you gave up for Lent.
Well, if you’re in need of a Lenten pep-talk, you’re not the only one. This week on Go Ask Your Father™, Monsignor Stuart Swetland shared the pep talk that he received while reading his daily Magnificat.
He said, “Have you ever been involved in a sport and had a pre-game pep talk? Or a half-time correction? Having one of those challenging talks that you hear, inspiring talks that motivate you to go out and perhaps come from behind to win. Well, that’s how I felt this morning. It was like hearing a coach. Both cajoling, but also encouraging.”
He explained that it was this reflection from Servant of God Catherine Doherty that struck him in a particular way:
Every day of this holy season of Lent cries out God’s love to us and for us. Are we going to begin to cry out our love back to Him? Or are we going to hem ourselves into a sort of deadly prison, by deadly words so short and so tragic? Yes, but… Yes, if… Yes, maybe… Not now Lord, a little later…
Is it possible that we can do that after we have traveled this holy journey? Especially the last mile of His public life and His Passion?
“These were challenging words,” Msgr. Swetland explained. “Because I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’m tempted to say yes, but… yes, if… yes, maybe… not now, Lord, a little later. But I remember, like I think I’ve said before here on Go Ask Your Father, I remember running out every day in the gym of my high school with that sign right above the door: If not now, when? If not you, who?”
At this halfway point in Lent, Msgr. Swetland encouraged listeners to regain the zeal they had at the beginning of Lent, and remember the reason for these Lenten practices.
“That’s really what St. Paul said to us at the beginning of Lent. Now is the time. Now is the time for us to be reconciled. Now is the time for us to be ambassadors of God’s mercy and reconciliation,” he said. “There’s still plenty of time in Lent left for us to begin again that journey with the Lord, where we draw close to Him. For He cries out in love to us. He cries our in love for us, asking us to respond. Not later. Not with a yes, but… or a yes, if… But with a yes, Lord, here I am. I’ve come to do your will.”
Listen to the pep talk below: