In my years of observing Lent as a pastor, I've noticed that I suffer a sort of Lenten breakdown about halfway through the season.
Every year I lay out my worship plans for the first four or five Sundays, with a vague notion of where I'm headed with Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Easter, but there comes a point when I have to make those plans more concrete while continuing to "do" Lent, which often includes some sort of special program or class, and just like this sentence, the season begins to run away with me and I wonder if I can really keep hold of the horse's mane because I clearly forgot the halter, the bridle, the reins, even the saddle.
Shortness of breath, not enough room in my head for all that needs consideration, a setting aside of other interests, and later a breaking through to completion: all these make Lent an anxious season with too little time for personal devotions.
One year I tried to pray the hours, and I did well for two weeks, but then the breakdown came.
Last year I spent Lent wrapping up my ministry, ending an interim, and I fear I shortchanged people and myself, though I told myself some of that had to happen, that a "perfect" ending wouldn't have been possible anyway.
Because, seriously, I am not Jesus.
Neither are you.
I hope this comes as a relief and not a surprise.
Hurriedly I write this, trying to hold the thoughts inclined to gallop off across the field of consciousness, full of their own importance, ignoring my well-ordered priorities, as the days grow longer and Lent grows older, bending in on itself, rounding the corner toward Easter, ready or not.