Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 1 million: Europe, Lent and Other Musings

First, I apologize for my absence in writing. I am writing this long book er. . .my dissertation so the idea of coming to a computer and typing is unheard of at this point =)

On the other hand I've been prodded by a recent write up by my Nugs. . .I on the other hand will be writing about my new work/life attitude since a recent trip to Europe has inspired a complete and total ability to relax and remain calm in all situations. . .more to come on that later!

Anyway - I think a lot of Nugs questions have sparked my own internal debate about what to do for Lent. . .what do you folks on the interwebs do? 

What does Lent mean to you? As someone from a religious background I look at it as two different things, first a sacrifice in preparation for the ultimate sacrifice, “He has saved us and called us to a holy life- not because of anything we have done but because of His own purpose and grace” – 2nd Timothy 1:9 and secondly the 40 days that Christ represented in the desert before public ministry where He endured constant temptation from Satan.

It is a tradition to give up something for Lent. Traditionally growing up you gave up soft drinks or sweets or homework (“it’s because of religious beliefs I swear” never really worked as an excuse). Now as an adult we use it as a crutch because let’s be honest the majority of us have already failed with our New Year’s resolutions. My family traditionally gives up sweets which is hard, however, the more I looked at it the more I realized that sweets isn’t my weakness, it’s BREAD. I love pasta, I love grains, and I could roll around and sleep in pizza… I have issues with all things grain- it’s a love hate relationship. So this year I’m giving up grains.

Some of my friends are actually adding to their life, they’re giving up bad habits like biting their nails, hitting the snooze button (keep the dream alive), being late to work, etc… I’m super proud of them. I have a friend who gave up NOT going to the gym- how awesome is that!?

Are you giving this up as a true sacrifice something that permanently will change who you are and every time you’re around it or tempted you say WOW what an amazing thing Christ did for me or are you giving up something because you’re supposed to and it is what you always give up?

Have you made any exceptions or pre-determined cheats? I did. I’m donating blood which means I get Oreos and Juice and Gatorade, I’m having 1 beer and a Hot Dog at the Braves Home Opening Day (if you know me, you know that this is basically my Christmas), and I’m having a slice of wedding cake at my friend’s wedding. There are certain things that deserve exceptions, I think if you go ahead and outline what they are it actually makes it easier to not cheat… you say well I really want this, but is it really on the same level as one of my closest friends weddings? Am I doing something good that is so taxing on my body it is a need to break like donating blood or running a marathon, or doing a huge workout competition you never thought you could do?? Is there a huge event in your life that you don’t want to miss out on? Have you formed the right support group to get you through the day to day even if it is just someone who goes to eat with you and doesn’t tempt you to break lent and helps you make better decisions?    

MORE IMPORTANT here’s the million dollar question, what happens after Easter? Do you continue this lifestyle or have a go crazy session on your favorite things for 6 weeks etc.

BIG THOUGHTS, little Nugget!

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