Admittedly, ‘dying’ might be a bit of an overstatement.
But sometimes it feels that way.
I started off this Lenten season with lots of resolve and determination. After all, I’d publicly shared with you guys that I was giving up something. Something I would miss every. single. day.
And I have done just that. For exactly 5 days and 14 hours. And counting.
I did a little research on Lent. And from everything I read, the Lenten season is meant to be a time of fasting and abstinence, whether one is abstaining from meat on Fridays, or entire meals altogether. Denying the flesh, as it were.
And let’s get one thing straight. I am not a fan of the fast. No way, no how. Honestly, it’s one thing I have purposely avoided, whether for dietary reasons or for spiritual ones. But this idea of fasting seemed to be the one thing that kept coming up again and again when I prayed on what I should give up this Lent. What I was to sacrifice for Him.
Why not TV, Lord? Why?
Argh. And isn’t that just the way God is? Hits you right at your very core? The one thing you don’t want to give up is the one thing He wants you to give up. But not because He doesn’t want you to have things you love, it’s because He wants you to love Him and honor Him above all.
So, I’ve created my own mini-version (okay, very mini) of a fast. A healthful and small breakfast and then dinner, without any of the bells and whistles. No desserts, no snacks, no fun stuff. And, so far, I’m hanging tough. I’m definitely not withering away by any stretch of the imagination that would take a very verrry long time but I have definitely felt, well, deprived. And I’ve tried to remind myself that this feeling of deprivation is actually a good thing. It’s a reminder that I am giving up something that I miss.
And definitely something that my love handles miss.
I’m determined to use this as an opportunity to change some bad habits, replace poor eating choices with good ones and get into a more healthful routine of caring for the body God has given me. This old girl ain’t what she used to be, but she’s the only bod I’ve got. And, God willing, she’s got lots of good years left on her.
Additionally, I am trying to use the times I feel like I’m really struggling to pray and spend time with Him, if even for a minute or two, to help me get back into the right frame of mind. A place of gratitude. Of thankfulness. Of mindfulness of all He sacrificed for me.
And that makes all the difference in the world.
It sure is hard, though. I hadn’t really realized just how often I was ‘indulging my flesh’. Yuk. It even sounds bad. So, if you’ve given up something for Lent and it’s killin’ ya, know that you’ve got a buddy in me, struggling too.
Truly, when I put on my ‘eternal perspective’ glasses, I see the deep and lasting value in observing this season. The key is having the right goals in mind and maintaining a proper, an eternal, perspective. For me, this journey is turning out to be a revelation of sorts.
And if I can lose 10 pounds in the process, so be it.