I have taken part in Lent now for many many years. I usually give up one thing for six weeks but this year I felt like I needed to do a crack down on myself and refocus. That being said I am giving up a few things this year.
- Stop it with the Sloth! (One of the 7 deadly sins, in layman's terms, being lazy.)
- Run a minimum of 1 mile every day
- Only watch one episode of TV on the days that I work
- Apply to at least one job every day
- No junk food
- Including no alcohol
So it's two concepts with a few parts. But hopefully I can stick with it. Usually I am very successful when it comes to the things that I give up every year for Lent. I think the deeper meaning behind the actions really helps to keep me motivated.
What is Lent? And why do I celebrate it? Here is a quick run down from Wikipedia:
Lent is a solemn religious observance in the liturgical calendar of many Christian denominations that begins on Ash Wednesday and covers a period of approximately six weeks before Easter Sunday. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, penance, repentance of sins, almsgiving, atonement and self-denial.
Its institutional purpose is heightened in the annual commemoration of Holy Week, marking the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the tradition and events of the New Testament beginning on Friday of Sorrows, further climaxing on Jesus' crucifixion on Good Friday, which ultimately culminates in the joyful celebration on Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. During Lent, many Christians commit to fasting or giving up certain types of luxuries as a form of penitence. Many Christians also add a Lenten spiritual discipline, such as reading a daily devotional, to draw themselves near to God. The Stations of the Cross, a devotional commemoration of Christ's carrying the Cross and of his execution, are often observed. Many Roman Catholic and some Protestant churches remove flowers from their altars, while crucifixes, religious statues, and other elaborate religious symbols are often veiled in violet fabrics in solemn observance of the event. Throughout Christendom, some adherents mark the season with the traditional abstention from the consumption of meat, most notably among Roman Catholics.
Lent is traditionally described as lasting for forty days, in commemoration of the forty days which, according to the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus spent, before beginning hispublic ministry, fasting in the desert, where he endured temptation by the Devil. In most of the West, it begins on Ash Wednesday. Different Christian denominations calculate its length differently. On this see Duration, below.
Do you celebrate lent? I'd love to hear about it!
Keep on running!