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Holy week is the culmination of the Lenten season. It is the week which we commemorate the manifestation of God's greatest love for humanity. It is when His beloved son died on the cross in exchange for the sins of the world. Instead of the lamb's blood, it was the blood of His only son being shed to save everyone from eternal death. Indeed it was the ultimate love story of the entire history, to lay one's life down for a friend.
With it, holy week is a perfect time for reflection. It has an ambiance of serenity and solemnity. There is a feeling of dryness deep within. There is a sense of longingness for something. Thus, it is a time for self-exploration, discovery, cleansing, and healing.
To give everybody that time, in some countries, it is a holiday. So, people especially Catholics have a break from their work. They could have time for whatever they wish to do on the days of the holy week.
So if you are in that country, I hope you will not forfeit the purpose of the holy week. As a help, I come up with these simple things which you can do during the holy week.
Things You Can Do This Holy Week
1. GET RECONCILED
A relationship is what all we have and all we will leave in this world. So let us make most of this life. Build a good relationship bearing with one another in love. Whatever conflicts may arise, be gentle in your words. Whatever misunderstanding may result, be humble to understand. Ephesians 4:2 BE COMPLETELY HUMBLE AND GENTLE; BE PATIENT, BEARING WITH ONE ANOTHER IN LOVE.
You need to reconcile with:
- Self - sometimes a past break-up, conflicts, mistakes or wrong decisions were hard to accept, hard to forget, and hard to move on. Why? It is because you have been hard on yourself. Sometimes, you think it was your fault. It was you. You were the problem. You had a lot of what-ifs. What if you have done this or that. But to tell you, it was not your fault. It was neither him also. It was a way of life teaching you a lesson. It was a way of life of training you to be strong. It was a way of life of telling you to accept. So, you need to forgive yourself. You need to stand up. You need to embrace oneself. Pray for His grace.
BE COMPLETELY HUMBLE AND GENTLE; BE PATIENT, BEARING WITH ONE ANOTHER IN LOVE.
— Ephesians 4:2
- People you have conflicts - I know it is hard to do. It needs a lot of humility and, it takes a lot of courage. But, I know it is a misery to have conflicts with somebody. It is similar to luggage deep within with you carried every day. It will eat you up inside. The more you keep it, the more toxins you will have deep within. So, never wait for the time when it is too late. Apologize and forgive others. Pray for His grace.
- God - Go to confession. 1 John 1:9 - If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just, and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. Remember that we are all God's creation. And, He loves his creation. So, if we hurt others, we hurt Him as well. Like our loved ones, we do not like them to get hurt. So, we apologize. By confessing, we are sorry for our faults and try to mend our broken relationship with God.
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
— Ephisians 4:31-32
2. PRAY AND MEDITATE
In prayer, you can find hope. You can find strength. You can build a stronger relationship with God. You can find yourself. It seems nobody is listening to you but deep within you could feel a touch of healing and miracles.
When praying, let your heart sing songs of praise. Let it speak words of gratitude. Or, it can be words of contriteness. You can also cry out all your worries. You can shout out all your aspirations. You can ask for patience, strength, and peace of mind. Do not also forget to ask something good for your loved ones and your enemies. Tell all that you want to tell. Empty yourself and let His mercy and grace fill you in return when you pray.
3. JOIN A RETREAT
It is also good to join a retreat. It is a programmed way of praying and meditating. There will be series of inspirational talks about God's love. It also has reflective activities which help you to think about your relationships with yourself, others, and God. There will be singing songs of praise and worship, prayers and even confession. Also, you've got to listen and learn from the experiences of others. Lastly, after this, you would feel renewed and refreshed.
4. READ INSPIRATIONAL OR SPIRITUAL BOOKS
It will help you grow your wisdom about life. You come to read different success stories which inspire you to go on with life amidst adversities. It will make you realize something good about living. You would find hope from how God works from the lives of other people as written in the book. And, you will become what you are reading. Inspired and good-spirited.
5. DO VIA CRUCIS
Bring with you a copy of the prayers to be used in every station of the cross. Most of all, do not forget to invite your friends or family to join you. In every station, try to reflect. Try to ask yourself what is the significance of that station to your life. You can also recall an experience that you could relate and learn a lesson from it. You can have a small sharing after doing it with your friends. It does not only improve your understanding of Christ's Passion and your faith. It also strengthens the bond with your friend or family.
6. SPEND TIME WITH YOUR LOVED ONES
You can pay your friend a visit. You can stay at home. You can pray together. Watch religious tv shows. Have a conversation. After all, holy week is also a time for family and friends. It is improving your relationship.
Whichever you choose to do this holy week, do not forget the reason for having this season. May you have a blessed and solemn Holy Week.