By Ron Pereira
Freedom! This is the word that rang through my head as I woke this morning around 5:45 AM. You see, my brothers and I just finished the 90-day Exodus journey we started this past Ash Wednesday.
It’s been the most rewarding 3 months of my life. It’s also been the hardest, most demanding, time of my life. And now day 91 has come and life after Exodus begins.
So, what I’d like to share in this article are a few of my goals for day 91 and beyond. I’m sharing these goals as a way of holding myself accountable. And, God willing, I also hope to inspire other men who may be thinking of committing to the Exodus disciplines.
Here are my day 91 (and beyond) goals:
- To remain in a constant state of grace. If I do fall into mortal sin immediate confession to a priest as soon as it’s logistically possible.
- To continue to strengthen my prayer life and relationship with Christ while also leading my family closer to Him and Our Lady each and every day.
- To strengthen my love and relationship with my wife, children, family, and friends.
- To strengthen my brotherhood with my Exodus brothers.
- To never allow technology, most especially my cell phone and the TV, to come before the attention and needs of my faith, family, and work.
- To never allow technology, most especially the TV, to keep me from being in bed by 10:00 PM.
- To never allow alcohol to serve as a crutch or way to deal with stress, anxiety, or anger.
And, in order to help me achieve these goals, I’ve developed a personal “action plan” based on the suggestions the creators of Exodus have put together.
While I don’t feel it’s appropriate to detail my exact plan here on the blog I will share that continuing with cold showers every morning (except Sunday) made my list and I most definitely have a plan to ensure things like watching sports never consumes me like it did in the past. I also have a specific plan for how alcohol will be consumed (hint: not for hydration purposes on a hot summer day).
My plan is to follow my “action plan” for 45 days at which time I will reevaluate and adjust as needed.
Finally, I definitely wondered what day 91 would feel like… would I be relieved it was over? Or would I be scared I’d fall right back to where I was before it started?
Well, I can safely say day 91 has been amazing. I feel strong. I feel blessed. I feel free.
And while I realize the evil one continues to prowl about seeking the ruin of my soul… I know Our Lord is with me and will keep me covered in His grace so long as I continue to cooperate with His will.