Today is the 1st day of Lent. Every year, many who practice Catholic principles begin the 40 (47 including Sundays) days of sacrifice and or celebration from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday. I am Episcopalian….some call it the Catholic-Lite religion….(Difference between the two).
This is often a time of “fasting” (or abstaining from certain foods or physical pleasures) for 40 days. This is said to be done to imitate Jesus Christ’s 40-day fast in the wilderness (Matt. 4:1-2).
In years past, I have committed to giving up something during lent. My lental sacrifice each year has been sweets. Hi, I am Tamieka and I am addicted to sweets.
As much as I try, I can not kick the sugar sweet habit. I just have to have it!!! This year will be no different and today I start the Lental fasting of sweets and added sugars…pray for me ya’ll.
Each year I have been giving up something during Lent. After doing some more research on Lent, I came across something (I can not remember where I found this) that has me thinking a little bit differently this year.
A NEW PERSPECTIVE:
The real aim of Lent is, above all else, to prepare men for the celebration of the death and Resurrection of Christ…the better the preparation the more effective the celebration will be. One can effectively relive the mystery only with purified mind and heart. The purpose of Lent is to provide that purification by weaning men from sin and selfishness through self-denial and prayer, by creating in them the desire to do God’s will and to make His kingdom come by making it come first of all in their hearts.
The goal is not just to abstain from sin for the duration of Lent but to root sin out of our lives forever. Conversion means leaving behind an old way of living and acting in order to embrace new life in Christ.
Pope Francis says, fasting must never become superficial. He often quotes the early Christian mystic John Chrysostom who said: “No act of virtue can be great if it is not followed by advantage for others. So, no matter how much time you spend fasting, no matter how much you sleep on a hard floor and eat ashes and sigh continually, if you do no good to others, you do nothing great.”
Hmmmm…so what does this mean for me this year?
This year not only will I fast on the sweets but I will be mindful and purposely to add an act of kindness, gratitude and thankfulness each day.
-Allot time everyday to look at, reflect and give thanks and gratitude for what is right in my life;
-Continue to smile and be kind to others;
To start today….Gratitude, Day 1….Today I am grateful for the sleep I got last night and the ability to wake up this morning.
Do you practice Lent? Do you fast or add something more positive? What are you grateful/thankful for?
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