This is Holy Week...the 40 days of Lent are drawing to an end and finally this weekend we can celebrate in the resurrection of our Lord and in our eternal salvation and redemption.
However, every celebration and victory comes after a long, hard battle. Victory can't even exist without a battle. Think about that for a moment. We wouldn't even know the sweet taste of celebration if there were no obstacles to overcome.
Holy Week, for me, allows the opportunity to once and for all lay it down at Jesus' feet. Through the forty days I fast, pray and discern the obstacles in my life, with the hope that by the end of Lent I'll be able to feel a progressive step taken closer to that victory.
I've been saying a prayer of forgiveness and in the beginning I was praying to want to pray the prayer. When I finally reached the step of wanting to pray the prayer then I prayed I could truly desire the request to remove the bitterness and resentment. Near forty days in and I am successful in wanting to pray the prayer and desiring the prayer's requests. But I still need to pray the prayer. ;)
At Palm Sunday Mass at St. Thomas High School they had coats laid out on the floor of the aisle to the altar. When blessing the palms outside of the chapel the priest said not to worry about them. It felt odd to walk into the chapel and step all over people's coats!
In the homily the priest explained how the townspeople laid their outer garments down the path for to protect Christ and the mare as they walked into the town. They laid down the very thing that protected them to create a safe path for Christ and Christ laid down his life to prepare the way for us in eternity.
The priest went on to explain that in Holy Week we should discern the obstacles and challenges life has given us and lay them down once and for all at Christ's feet. Let go of the control and in laying them down create a path to victory and celebration.
I am trying. It isn't easy. But I am trying. I am going to take a personal sabbatical this Holy Week to be in prayer and lay it down.
Here is a song that always helps set the mood. Lay It Down by Matt Maher.
Blessed Holy Week to everyone.