You may be wondering, what is Lent? And if you’re too lazy to click the link, as I would be whilst reading a stranger’s blog, I’ll tell you a brief summary.
Lent is a religious observance in Christianity that takes place for the 40 day duration between Ash Wednesday (14 Feb 2018) and Easter (1 April 2018). According to the above-linked Wikipedia article, “The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, doing penance, mortifying the flesh, repentance of sins, alms-giving, and self-denial.” The duration is 40 days due to Jesus having spent 40 days fasting in the desert.
In memory of this, we often fast a bad habit that we feel is separating us from God such as gambling or pornography, try to add something into our daily habits to bring us closer to God such as prayers and Bible studies, or Modern Lent which is like a New Years Resolution for 40 days instead of 365.
In the past I have given up everything from sweets to Netflix, usually following the Modern Lent. I typically focus on my health or conquering distractions.
This year, I’ve decided to give up any food with packaging. No chips, cookies, microwave food, deliveries, takeaways, etc. This will be beneficial in three ways: my health, money, and waste. It’s common knowledge that these items are quite bad for health and also costly. Additionally, I’ve been trying to reduce my consumption of disposables in recent months and packets are a common waste item in my bin.
It took me some time to come to this decision, but I’m certain that it’s the correct one. Although it will be somewhat difficult because it starts on Valentine’s Day (chocolate 😢) and it’s presently Girl Scout Cookie season.. it’s meant to be difficult. We are supposed to challenge ourselves and although I may struggle at times, that is the purpose.
Have you ever participated in Lent? What do you plan to give up this year?
Also a quick fun fact, have you heard of the festival Mardi Gras? In French, it translates to Fat Tuesday and is celebrated as the final indulgence before Ash Wednesday.