Friday, January 27, 2017

What Are You Giving Up For Lent This Year?

This year I decided very quickly what Lenten sacrifice I was going to make.  

This year for Lent I am giving up Lent!! 

I can't fast any more because of diabetes.  I can't eat any of the foods that would be a sacrifice for me to give up because I haven't been able to eat any of them for the past 3 years anyway. Each time I have tried to cheat I have paid a hefty health price.

I can't give up much in the way of say, tv shows, because there are so few I watch and none that would be a sacrifice to stop watching during the Lenten season.  As far as reading materials, it is all ready more of a sacrifice to force myself to read some of the drivel I have come across in recent months than to give them up.

I all ready gave up eating in restaurants more than about twice a month because the cost was becoming prohibitive, so nothing new to sacrifice there.

I can't give up alcohol because I rarely consume it, so no sacrifice to say "no" to the occasional glass of wine or gin and tonic.

I can't give up communicating with friends and family because there has been far too much of that as a natural course of events during some of our more recent moves around the country.

I suppose giving up church attendance, or prayer times, or Bible reading is not quite the point of Lent either is it?  Those are the most consistent participatory events in my life at present.

I can't give up choir practise just because for me it would definitely be a huge sacrifice, probably the most meaningful sacrifice,  because that is not fair to the other members or the director.

The point of Lent is sacrifice, confession, atonement, and renewed acceptance of Jesus' sacrifice for us, leading us into deeper transformation of our characters and lives by him.

I suspect I can manage the last 3 items on that list whether or not I sacrifice anything material as an object lesson.....at least for this year.....my physical energy, mental motivation and general feelings of well being and trust in the Lord have returned in great leaps and bounds over the past year or so.  

Is it possible to make a carry over transfer of the things I had to sacrifice, often against my will, in previous years and locations and bring at least one of them forward into this year???  

Lent: a portion of the church year that I have never completely understood the point of in terms of the personal practise of deprivation in my particular denomination.  Hopefully I will gain a better grasp on the whole thing as the years go by.  I'm trying guys, I'm trying.....You won me over to the practises of Advent....perhaps Lent is next.

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