Saturday, March 9, 2019

Thoughts of Lent & Leading Into It

Full disclosure, I started writing on this on Thursday.  However, I am just getting to finishing it up and posting today.  So I decided to leave it as is, but be real about the timing of it all.

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday.  Lent has started.

I will be honest, I don't know much about either.  I just know they happen, lead up to holy week, and it ends with Easter.  Ash Wednesday, if you go to a church service they place a cross from ash on your forehead.

I also know that some give up meat on Fridays, but can have fish during lent.  I also know people pick something to give up, one thing or many, during the 40 days.  Like, I am going to give up chocolate during lent.  But truthfully, I never really learned about some of this and what is all means in faith.  However, I am trying now to take the time to gain wisdom, open my heart, and dig deeper.

I was thinking about it the past couple of days.  I liken it some to the perspective on making new year's resolutions.  Things that we resolve to do in the coming year, but then usually abandon just a mere few weeks into the year typically.

Not to say that I haven't picked something some years to give up, but thinking on it some things just seem to line up.  I have also seen different takes on this concept of giving something up for lent.  Like each day give an item away to donate or even each day give that many items away to donate.

It also brings to mind it takes 27 days to change a habit, likewise, it takes 27 days to create a new one.  It is almost like using lent as a way to create a new habit or to change a bad one.  But what happens then after the 40 days.

Why not dig deeper into it all?

Instead of giving up something, changing a habit, what can you do deepen your wisdom? Strengthen you? Connect you to God? 

Would giving up something for lent be life changing?  Maybe.  But what about understanding better what Ash Wednesday is for, why is there lent, and letting yourself dig deeper into your faith...what would that do?

Ash Wednesday is day of repentance, prayer, and fasting.  Lent is 40 days long and a time for Christians to remember when Jesus went into the desert to fast and pray before beginning his word for God.  It is a season of reflection and preparation leading up to the celebrations of Easter.

Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, sometimes known as Fat Tuesday, led me to wonder more about this season.

So in this Lenten season, where does that place me? Am I going to go the route of given up an item I like or using it clear out my house and simplify?  Am I going to use it to dig in deeper and to reflect as well?

I am going to nourish my mind, body, spirit.  I am going to use the time to pray, to reflect, to dig in more into my faith.  As we move along during this time I will share my thoughts and happenings.

Because we know the bible and we know Easter is coming and we know what happens, it is kind of like knowing the ending to the movie "Titanic" only to have the movie stop working with 10 minutes left and getting free passes, to see "Titanic".  We know Easter is going to happen.  We know Jesus is going to die on the cross.  We know he will rise again.  Why?  Because it is what is written in the bible.

So what can we do during Lent?  Even if you have chosen a different religion, a different faith path, or not believing in God or not having faith, there is still something we can all do during this season. 

We are just a handful of days away from Spring.  Winter is coming to a close and soon everywhere will be warming up and green will start bursting forth. 

Why not use the end of Winter and the first part of Spring as a time of reflection?  Find a slower rhythm, deepen your wisdom, open to new perspectives, deepen your connections in your relationships, let go where needed. 

Let's let ourselves grow in this season.

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