Thoughts About Lent

Are you observing Lent?

I’ve never  been a part of a denomination that observes Lent.  Actually, I’ve never really even understood it until a few years ago.  But since then, every year, I’ve asked The Lord what He would like for me to do to participate in these special 40 days.  For those of you who are like me, and aren’t too informed about Lent, here is some information I found helpful:

The purpose of Lent is to be a season of fasting, self-denial, Christian growth, penitence, conversion, and simplicity. Lent, which comes from the Teutonic (Germanic) word for springtime, can be viewed as a spiritual spring cleaning [Jennifer here – like “Spring Cleaning of the Heart Posts 1, 2, and 3]: a time for taking spiritual inventory and then cleaning out those things which hinder our corporate and personal relationships with Jesus Christ and our service to him. Thus it is fitting that the season of Lent begin with a symbol of repentance: placing ashes mixed with oil on one’s head or forehead. However, we must remember that our Lenten disciplines are supposed to ultimately transform our entire person: body, soul, and spirit.

In praying about being transformed body, soul, and spirit, I felt The Lord lead me to something different for Lent.  Instead of giving up something (like chocolate, shopping, facebook, etc – of which, unfortunately, my fleshly self would find a quick replacement), The Lord led me to ADD something to my life – as unto Him – for His glory in my body, soul, and spirit.  He called me to commit to ADD a few healthy habits and to exercise my body on a consistent level – for Him.  Not so that I’ll look better in my clothes or feel better about myself.  Just For Him.  For His purposes in and through my life.

Through what I learned from the Made to Crave webcasts, I added the goal of 25 grams of fiber to my diet each day, and am drinking 16 oz of water 1st thing in the morning (before the coffee).  In doing this with The Lord, it has been a true joy.

As far as the exercise goes, I’ve never exercised consistently, and especially for The Lord – until now.  See, exercise isn’t something I’ve ever enjoyed. {Sweat messes up my makeup and hair!}  I started exercising this January as a part of Bella Mella’s 21 Days of Motivation and Meditation to get Moving, but I didn’t make it a priority, and soon, my resolve to exercise daily fizzled out.  I felt like a failure-much.  I had the head knowledge, but my heart wasn’t engaged. 

Then came Lent.  Several weeks before, The Lord started stirring in my heart that He wanted something special from me this year.  I offered the customary fastings, but that wasn’t what He seemed to want.  The more I prayed, the more I felt led not so much to “fast”, but to “add” exercise.  (And in turn, I guess I’m fasting from laziness?)  With that in mind, God reminded me of something I heard about several years ago – the From Couch to 5 K running plan. 

I started the running plan several weeks ago, and have actually enjoyed it.  Doing it as a gift to The Lord has made all the difference.   Along the way, I’m also enjoying the side effects of a few healthy habits and consistent exercise – less sluggishness and being able to fit into some pants that were too tight last year. 😉  I pray that this will become a lifestyle – a special thing The Lord and I do not only during Lent, but for years to come.

So tell me ~ Do you observe Lent?  And if so, what are you doing as unto The Lord?  It’s never too late to consecrate ourselves to the Lord – we don’t have to do this only during the Lenten Season.  Today is a great day to do all we do as unto The Lord.  Much love to each of you~

“So then, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you may do, do all for the honor and glory of God.”  1 Cor. 10:31

About SmellingCoffee

I'm a Jesus-loving, husband-loving, family-loving minister's wife and mom to two college kids, making our home and serving our Lord in the Mississippi Delta. I study, teach, speak, and write for the greatest Boss in the universe. "Faith, Family, Food, Fun, and Living Life brewed in the fragrance of the knowledge of Jesus Christ in every place": That's what you'll find at SmellingCoffee.com

Comments

  1. Hey! This post was very inspirational! God speaks to you best when you are still. What I am subtracting from my life is negative talk and doubt. I have elected to ADD time for meditation and prayer and so far so good!

    Glad to have come across your blog!
    Mine can be found at: http://www.mindbodysouletc.info

  2. Smelling Coffee says:

    Lisa~ I've been praying for you as you rise early and PRAY! That's a wonderful calling, and one The Lord will help you fulfill, for sure. Just get up when He awakes you and calls you – that's the true secret.

    With love~
    Jennifer

  3. Smelling Coffee says:

    Amber Marie~ I've been using my treadmill at home. One of these days, I'll progress to the fittness center at DSU. 🙂

  4. Sure am observing. But not doing as well as I hoped. I too am not from a denomination that observes Lent as a requirement but I find it is a truly important. First off, my word of the year is Prayerfully so what I've wanted to do during Lent is get up before my family rises and before I read my bible in the morning and just PRAY. I know this can be life changing in my relationship with Him, yet I haven't been consistent. Also I felt led to "give up" something so I "fast" from the computer on Sunday. I'm usually on the computer every day. Would sure covet your prayer that I'm more faithful in my daily prayer time.

  5. I hate running with a passion! I have been exercising this semester but 5:30 comes very early…where are you working out?