Friday, February 08, 2008

The Journey Begins...

It is the Lenten season. As I reflect on my last few posts, I have come to the realization that this is the perfect time to actively seek the clarity I long for. I love Easter. It is by far my most favorite holiday. I love everything it represents spiritually. I love the promise, the hope, and the expectation of the season. The idea of a 40-day preparation for Easter intrigues me. Our church observes lent, but not in the same way the Catholic Church or Greek Orthodox do. I like the concept of self-sacrifice during the Lenten season. The idea of giving something up that I find pleasurable as outward evidence of an inner work, strengthens my spirit. Perhaps it is because self-discipline often eludes me. I think that by committing to "giving up" something and in its place creating time to pray, reflect, and serve; one can’t help but grow. By observing and participating in the Lenten season I can begin to find clarity in my life as well as prepare my heart and mind for the Easter celebration. So, over the next 40 days (yes I know it is less than 40 by now), I will take you along on the journey with me.

The decision has been made as to what I will relinquish for the Lenten season. I am not going to publicly acknowledge what it is I am giving up because I believe it to be a contract between God and myself. Guess you will have to trust me on this one, but I am committed to "giving up" this pleasure until Easter. Since whatever one chooses to give up for Lent is supposed to be something pleasurable, I imagine that giving up exercise and vegetables isn't exactly what theologians had in mind.

I also want to embrace the idea of replacing what I have sacrificed with something of value, perhaps in a service for others fashion. I will have to think about this one, but will actively explore ways to serve during the season.

I know I am getting a late start on this lent thing due to a major "act of God" (see post below), but I really don't think God will mind since it is sort of His fault anyway and He knows where my heart lies.

Tell me, are you doing anything to commemorate this Lenten season? If you are, share your stories. I love hearing from others walking the same path. The journey begins…

To change and to change for the better are two different things.
German proverb

This I know for sure…

2 comments:

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Annie said...

As a Catholic I found that Lent and Holy Week to be my least favorite time of year. But my birth faith tends to err on the side of guilt and sin to the near exclusion of hope and joy. I prefer Advent and Christmas still because they represent the positive aspects of Christianity.

I have abstained from anything in a while. I read your other post about being a more conscious consumer and citizen of the world. Not so easy given the world we privileged few get to live in. I have always shunned Wal-mart for its employment practices and the way it destroys smaller businesses and blights whatever area of a town or city it is located in. Since coming here to Alberta I have become a recycler. I believe in donating goods that are no longer of use to charities (Goodwill) or simply giving them to people in need directly. I don't believe that we can impact the larger world as a single person but through our local efforts perhaps we can inspire others to make changes and be a ripple effect. Overwhelming when you start to think about all the changes though.