In today’s Lord of the Rings passage we read:
Gandalf said, ‘There remains a short while of doubt, which we must use. […] It may take some time before he learns his error. We must snatch that time. We have been too leisurely. We must move.'”
And in today’s Scripture we hear:
And now we follow you with our whole heart, we fear you and we pray to you. Do not let us be put to shame, but deal with us in your kindness and great mercy. Deliver us by your wonders, and bring glory to your name, O Lord.” (Daniel 3: 41-43)
We have been too leisurely: we have assumed we had limitless time, endless opportunity to make things right and change our ways. We have approached the things that matter with only casual interest: we have prioritized the fleeting and ephemeral over the permanent and Last Things. There remains only a short while of doubt: before we become set in our ways, before the institutions and structures that orient us to the Good become too brittle, before we undermine and enfeeble the people we love the most. We must snatch the time, and return to God with our whole heart. With vigor and energy, we must seize the reconciliation and renewal of this Lent as if it might be our last–for it might be our last. Our time upon the Earth is but a short while: we have been too leisurely. We must move.