I’ve decided to observe Lent this year. No, I am not staring at my belly button. I'm observing the practice of giving up something on Ash Wednesday (today) till Easter morning.
I know that traditionally Ash Wednesday has been observed by those who follow Catholicism. I do not. For me my observance of this holiday will be very different from the catholic experience.
On Sunday mornings recently I have been working through a series from John 6 called Hungry. During the series Jesus challenges the crowd to not hunger for food that perishes but instead hunger for food that does not perish. What is Jesus meaning? He simply is communicating that the crowd was satisfied with bread when they could have had him.
I wonder if I do the same.
Every morning I wake up to study my Bible, read a few chapters from leadership and devotional books, pray, and then get ready to face the day. Often my days are busy, and by the end I realize that the last time I spoke to God was that morning when I prayed. Ouch. As I lay in bed I lament another day spent too busy to be in the presence of God.
This year I will celebrate Lent through sacrifice. I am going to sacrifice dessert. I LOVE dessert. I tend to have something sweet to end both lunch and dinner every day. Truth be told I have a few bites of candy off my secretary's desk as a mid morning snack. I wanted to give God something that I would actually miss. I want to sit and watch my two girls enjoy dessert so that I might realize what I am missing. My goal in this sacrifice is for my heart to yearn for something sweet. Why? I do this so that I might see how I should hunger for God. It is my hope that every time my heart is tempted to taste sweetness, it might turn to God.
I hope come Easter morning that I can look back at this time of giving an indulgence as a time where I gained something much greater.