Ash Wednesday is March 9 and already friends are talking about what they are going to give up. Chocolate and wine seem to be perennial favorites. Other friends take a different approach by adding something good in their life like exercise, or serving food at a local food kitchen. Sounds like many of us resurrect New Year’s resolutions that were broken by January 8!
The tradition of giving something up, or adding something good in your life during Lent is meant for a spiritual purpose. Fasting may allow some mastery over appetites and pleasures, or giving up a meal may allow time for additional prayer. Reading a devotional book that you just can’t seem to find the time for is another popular Lenten discipline.
Last year, I was headed down the same road. Wine or chocolate; chocolate or wine.
Instead, I heard a voice, “Why is My love not enough for you? You know I love you unconditionally, that you are my beloved Child and that I have forgiven you all your sins. With My grace and mercy, you know that I love you. So, why is it not enough?”
The question was sobering. I was prepared to give up both wine and chocolate for six weeks if I didn’t have to examine my soul.
“You have six weeks; I would like an answer on Easter Sunday.”
I began Ash Wednesday night in a cold sweat trying to unravel my motivations and the false gods that I worshiped in my life. Most of them centered around relationships, but there were others too.
What will be your Lenten discipline this year?
Easter Sunday is April 24; six weeks for you to answer the question, “Why is God’s love not enough?”