This year’s winter has been, as a pleasant surprise, pretty mild. After last year’s bitterly cold season, I could get used to weather like this. Nonetheless, short days and (still somewhat) cold weather has me in my typical winter funk. I’ve been making conscious effort to improve some of my bad habits and attitudes and I have found, unfortunately, that it only takes a day, nay hours, to totally undo what I have been working on for months. So, here I am no further along at complimenting people more, exercising more, eating better, or handling bad situations with good responses than when I started the year out.
I am thankful for Lent because it forces me to do some more self-examination when I try to decide what I want to give up for the term. Coming from the Presbyterian church, we didn’t really put much of an emphasis on Lent. I didn’t ever really give up anything until I started dating Adriene, from the Methodist church. I don’t even know if there is anything “sacred” about Lent like there is for Easter. I’m sure there are strong opinions on both sides of the argument. However, I do think it’s a good thing to figure out why we do some things and give them up for a while, if nothing else to prove they don’t hold power over us.
I don’t usually like to talk about what I give up for Lent. It’s a personal matter for me and I don’t like to parade my self-control (which is actually really poor) and self-righteousness. What I give up may be perfectly fine for someone else and it may not even be sinful at all. I do usually find out quickly just how much I miss it when it give it up for a while and that tells me a lot about myself, good and bad.
So, as I’m pondering my vices and bad habits, I’m making conscious choices to let go of some parts of my life in search of both growing deeper as a disciple and improving myself as a husband, father, and person. This year is still young yet and there is still time to achieve my goals. More than just forty days, I want to go further up and further in and throw aside the things that will slow me down.