I’m not much of giver-upper in Lent.
I used to sacrifice chocolate or some other specific sweet guilty pleasure. But then I decided I wasn’t sure how doing that brought me closer to Christ. I thought more about the chocolate than the chosen one. I know that in my suffering, I was supposed to turn my trials to him, but the self-inflicted chocolate deprivation just didn’t seem to do the trick. The sacrifice, at least for me, seemed misplaced. Besides, I found that I turned to him so frequently throughout the day, that I couldn’t figure out why I needed some planned punishment to do it more. Why not instead plan to be more specific in my prayers? Why not offer myself willingly and lovingly? After all, that’s what he did for us.
So, instead of sitting down and mindlessly turning on the TV, I mindfully crack open the Bible or read a Lenten reflection. Instead of vegging out in front of the late night news shows, Richard and I will share time with the next day’s readings or saying the Divine Mercy Chaplet.
I guess in a way, I’m giving up something: wasting time on activities that don’t bring me any closer to the cross and resurrection. By doing so, it gives me an opportunity to focus more on my relationships with Christ and my family than my relationship with chocolate (which, by the way, remains strong).