I think the first time I actually participated in Lent was one of my years in Thailand. It was kind of amazing. I was able to truly reflect on Jesus, Easter, sacrifice, and love. Ever since I have had ups and downs of practicing Lent. There have been good seasons, and there have been tough seasons.
Lent 2016 I am at a point where I need to just take a step back and evaluate my busy life. I just need to take time away from everything and reflect on sacrifice. Focus on what this season brought into our lives, and grow closer to that reason.
As I was talking with my students about Lent today, and what giving up something means, we talked about how if you give something up you need to actually replace it with something else. For instance if I give up FB (which I am doing) then I need to replace it with something that is going to help me grow in my walk with God.
I read a great article the other day that really helped me to focus on some things that I want to incorporate into my life during this season.
So here they are:
Apologizing: I want to be someone who can admit when she is wrong. I want to be someone that is quick to apologize when my words or action are not authentic. I want to be about loving instead of judging.
RAK: Random Acts of Kindness that don't involve money. I love getting notes. It is probably my most favorite thing to receive and I feel like I can turn the tables and make this time about showering love on those in my life with notes of appreciation. With authentic words of encouragement, and random acts of grace and mercy.
The book of John: Instead of reading FB posts I am going to read the book of John as many times as I can during these next 6 weeks. I am going to let that be my focus. I am pretty sure I will learn a lot. I read an article that suggested this. Just think how well I will know the book of John after focusing on it for at least the next 40 days.
Show Love: Sometimes I am not able to say the words. I want to be intentional with those in my life. I want them to know and feel that they are truly loved by me. I commit to making sure that people leave my presence feeling loved.
Prayer: I want to pray without ceasing during this time. I have some things that I won't be doing so that I can have time to pray. To pray for those that I know are struggling, to intercede on the behalf of those that are currently suffering. To be on my knees in prayer for the world, and its leaders.
I want Lent to be a time of growth and change. I want my focus during these days to be completely on the one who has changed me. The one who came here to bring me life. I don't deserve what I have been given, but I am thankful.