Saturday, March 12, 2011

Taking out the trash

While I certainly take out the physical trash at home each week, my goal is to take out the spiritual trash at least once a week (or as often as necessary) through the sacrament of confession. I feel so blessed to have a local parish that offers confession daily before each Mass (there are 27+ Masses a week!). Thus, there is never an excuse not to take advantage of the sacrament.

Since my return to the church in 2007, I find myself reflecting where I  am currently in my spiritual life as compared to the previous year. With this, I have also gained a deeper appreciation for Lent. As we are called to repent in this time period, I continue to look at areas that I need to work on. This means frequenting the confessional with a deeper sense of renewal in my life.  Each rung of the spiritual ladder that I climb works away at those vices and sins. As I continue on my path of sanctification, God seemingly calls me to a higher standard in so many respects. This means understanding sin better and making more sincere and well thought out confessions.

I often find myself scribbling notes for confession on a piece of paper before going into the confessional, or I tend to forget things. Today, I used a bookmark (a receipt) in a Lenten book that I am reading for those notes. When I got back to my vehicle after confession, I tore up the receipt. The sound of tearing paper seemed to resonate loudly. With the pieces then set on top of the book, the imagery of what I just did struck me in a powerful way that I didn't expect. At that moment, I realized how my sins were forgiven in God's eyes. Just like the destroying of the receipt, God forgot my sins at the instant of confession, cleansing my soul. Often times, I tend dwell on the past and the sins that I have committed, feeling like they drag me down. In the tearing of the paper, today was a great reminder that those sins are forgiven and forgotten in God's eyes. Deo Gratias!

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