I read something today that made me think about Lent a little more.
Some background on me: raised in a liturgical tradition but being devoid of a personal faith until I was 18, I have had a bit of a knee-jerk reaction towards things that are “religious” and/or smack of my “religious past.” Which has (until recently) meant any sort of Lenten observation or anything that is on the liturgical calendar and has a specific “robe colour” or service. Have I been a bit extreme? Yeah, probably. But that is changing a little bit as I realize that Evangelical churches have missed out on a lot of contemplation by ignoring (for the large part) most (or all) of Lent.
I’m still not ready to stop eating meat on Fridays or give up something for 40 days, etc., but as I mentioned above, I read something that I think I will incorporate this year.
Instead of “giving up something” for the 40 days of Lent, how about “giving something” for the 40 days of Lent? I thought it was interesting and a good idea–the author suggested that “giving praise” to someone or “saying thanks” to someone every day for the 40 days of Lent would not only give us a new habit (because most habits are built inside of 21 days of repetition), but would bless someone else while we keep our reason for doing it to ourselves and contemplate our actions. I like it a lot better than ‘giving up sweets’ (which was extremely vogue when i was growing up) as a Lenten tradition, and that way, I can keep my focus and encourage someone else in the process.
Interesting idea, eh?.