Made it through the first week of Lent

Yesterday we began the backyard clean up: layers of oak leaves; debris; small broken off willow branches. A lot of leaves. We never got around to a backyard clean up last fall so there’s a lot to uncover out there.

I like our backyard. I’ve planted grape-pop smelling iris, the kind in my grandparent’s yard and yellow iris like in my Grandma Sunderland’s yard – native to the plains as much as I can remember. We’ve also planted peonies, dug up rhizomes from my older cousin’s yard who got them from his mother’s yard.

Our backyard is as full of memories and family as is our house with one grandmother’s dishes, another grandmother’s bowl, another’s crystal plate. You know. All those pieces of family.

But in the back yard, under the debris from left over peony bushes and left over iris stocks, is another treasure of discovery. Under all that detritus, new green shoots were forming and pushing above ground. The rose bushes have buds and the willow tree branches are the faint yellow-green of new growth.

That’s sort of what Lent does for us humans – gives us a chance to clear away the detritus of the previous year and allow light to feed new growth. When I came in this afternoon and climbed the stairs, I started to say “boy, my hips ache…” but I only got as far as “boy, my….” before I remembered my lenten vow to quit complaining about the aches in my body.

This might even get to be a real new growth and healing! Meaning, even after Lent, I hope I remember to avoid complaining. That’s my plan, anyway.

How’s your Lenten resolves going this end of the first week of Lent? And yes, it’s only the first week. And if your resolve has slipped, don’t worry! You still have five weeks to practice.

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