Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday is a day of celebrating before everyone begins their 40-day fast. This is done to supposedly imitate Jesus Christ’s 40 day fast in the wilderness (Matt 4:1-2). To prepare the hearts of men/women for the celebration of the death and resurrection of Christ. It can also be a purification of our sin and selfishness through our prayers and self-denial.
Then mind wanders to a few verses that say that it was for freedom that Christ set us free; keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. I also think of the hymn that says Jesus paid it all. What that says to me is that I am free, He did it all. I can ride on his sacrifice all the way home. However, I still feel a sense of doing something for Lent. A few years ago, after realizing my freedom, I decided to not give up but rather to add to my life something that I hoped would draw me closer to God. God gave his son so that I don’t have to give up anything. I simply need to accept his gift of salvation. It was the most meaningful Lent in years. Here is my list of things I will “give up.”
1. I will give up worrying. When I catch myself, I will say a prayer.
2. I will give up complaining. When I catch myself, I will say what I am thankful for.
3. I will give up frowning. When I catch myself, I will smile.
4. I will give up saying something negative. When I catch myself, I will say something positive.
5. I will give up being wasteful. When I catch myself, I will stop & save & give.
6. I will give up trying to be right/perfect. When I catch myself, I will stop and accept.
7. I will give up being careless. When I catch myself, I will do something that says I care.
8. I will give up saying I have nothing to wear. When I catch myself, I will put on something clean and without holes.
He is all you need. He paid it all. What will you give up during this season of reflection?