It’s been years since I partook in Lent. And I won’t even be attending Ash Wednesday. I’m probably not doing this the right way so I’m sure some people out there won’t think that this counts. But I wanted to give up something this year. I thought it would be good for me. And the fact that when you compare giving up something for the sake of a man who gave his life for yours, (a little more history below), well, I mean Netflix seems so small when you set it next to death.
So..what is Lent? I will quickly cover a few basics. Lent is celebration that lasts 40 days and 40 nights. In the olden days Jesus was thought to have been send into the wilderness by God where he fasted and prayed for 40 days and nights. In this time Jesus was tempted in a number of ways by Satan, yet he found strength and was able to fight the temptation, afterwards he was able to begin his ministry.
In general terms, “Lent is a time of repentance, fasting, and preparation for the upcoming easter.” Those who are religious and practice this every year are most likely doing it because they believe that it will help them grow closer to God as this is the time of year when Christians focus on living a simpler life, and many spend a great deal of time in prayer.
Something I actually learned in my research today is that Lent is also an occasion for self-discovery and reflection. Which honestly I found ironically perfect because I was feeling like I needed to really do some type of self journey or exploration really soon to shake up a few of my perspectives and traits. I also found out that apparently Sundays in Lent are not counted…I found this weird because Jesus didn’t get Sundays off when he was in the wilderness..But each Sunday represents a ‘mini-Easter’ I guess? Honestly I don’t really understand that part. And I feel if it was all forty days and nights that he had to endure on his journey then it should be the same on mine.
I like that the United Methodist Church described it as a self-discovery journey, because that’s really the path I’m on in life right now. Upper Room Ministries talks about how this could be useful for someone who feels they are running around in circles, by participating in Lent you’re able to bring yourself away from the distractions of your everyday life. Your normal automatic processed routine gets altered up a little bit and you may find something about yourself you didn’t realize. A direction or purpose you were perhaps unaware of. By eliminating these distractions we are able to regroup and view our lives from a different angle. URM say’s “it’s a 40 day trial run in changing your lifestyle and letting God change your heart.”
Now, of course there are many people out there who are not religious, and please know that I don’t mean to offend. I, myself, and Christin. I was Baptized Catholic, however I don’t practice. I don’t even go to church anymore. But I do have my own spiritual and other worldly beliefs. I am also open to others, so please share your thoughts, or if your religion has anything similar, I’d love to learn about it.
And with religion set aside, you could almost look at this as though it’s just another new years resolution. Another way to clean up your life or work on something you might want to change.
So what am I planning on doing for it? I’ve seen a few things going around for Lent. One being the 40 Bags for 40 days. I love the thought of that. Unfortunately, I recently went through and cleaned out my closet and a bunch of other things. I’m still in the process of sorting things out and minimizing, but I don’t think I could fill 40 bags. So I am just going to see how many I can get rid of over the next 40 days.
Like I mentioned previously too, I am giving up Netflix. I use it as a major distraction in my life. I really want to focus on being more productive with my time and I feel like this is a great way to cleanse my life of this distraction and allow myself to refocus on a few different things.
A few other things I’m going to do is read more, since I won’t be spending hours in front of the TV, I’m also going to really make an effort to eat healthier over the next month+, and I’ll be thinning things out every week as well in an effort to further minimize my junk.
So if you’re partaking in Lent let me know! It starts tomorrow March 1st so you still have time to figure out the path of self-exploration you’re most interested in. Leave me a comment about what you’re abstaining from for the next forty days. Or if your culture does something similar let me know too! I’m quite curious. I’ll be doing a few posts about how my Lent Journey is going, I have a feeling it will be a little difficult in the beginning as I watch TV and Netflix/Movies all the time, but this is going to be good.
This little journey is needed!
Happy Lent to all.
❤ Lindsey Grace