Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Can I Ash You A Question? (oh, that's bad)

When we lived in Baton Rouge, people would talk for weeks about what they were planning to give up for Lent. I would always pick a sacrifice that, for me at least, was difficult: no sugar, no diet Coke, no carbs, etc. I don't think David has ever been more ready for Jesus to get on up out of that tomb than the year I gave up diet Coke - that was my most difficult Lent sacrifice yet, no question. Nothing makes me die to self faster than the absence of caffeine.

One year I heard an idea that instead of giving up something, we could take on something - a few more hours of volunteer work, finally reading that Max Lucado book sitting on the nightstand, visiting an elderly relative or friend on a regular basis. I thought the idea was a revelation, so I started my own little Lent tradition of going to a Christian book store on Ash Wednesday and looking for a new devotional book - something that would give me some new perspective during the 40 days leading up to Easter.

Here in Birmingham, I find that people don't talk about Lent as much...probably because there's not as much of a Catholic influence in these parts (in restaurants in south Louisiana, there are actually different menus for Lent - no meat, only fish). I thought about that today when Sister emailed me and mentioned that she was heading to church at noon - and then when I picked Alex up from Mother's Day Out this afternoon, his teacher had obviously been to church as well (the black marks on her forehead gave her away).

I realize that we're a pretty diverse denominational group, but I'm just wondering: are any of you giving up something or taking on something for Lent this year? If so, what?

As for me, I'm reading C.S. Lewis' The Problem of Pain. Just a little "light" reading, you know, so that my brain can finally implode from sheer effort.

Holla back in the comments.


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