Yesterday I happened to flip by the theologically sound show, The Talk, and they were discussing what they would consider giving up during Lent. It sort of hit me when one of the hosts said, "What would be the most difficult thing for you to give up for 40 days?"
If you're my real life friend, keep up with me on Facebook, or have read my blog very long, this couldn't possibly be difficult to figure out about me. My top two would be:
Now, how exactly would a person correlate giving up McDonald's or Facebook with honoring God or growing closer to Him? As I was putting together this post, I noticed that a friend on Facebook said:
"I guess my question is: why? I mean, if it is symbolic of the sacrifice, it's commendable, but I get the impression a lot of people do it more as a challenge to themselves, like a mid-year New Years Resolution, or because they can. But I hope everyone who does at the very least reads on what it means. Otherwise it's like a mockery of the whole point of it."I completely agree with her.
If I were to take part in it, it would not be because I think scripture commands me to or that I have to. I think a large part of this practice has to do with self-denial. How often do we tell ourselves no? Could I grow closer in my faith if I had to give up two of my biggies and rely on His strength to do it? As silly as it sounds, I know it would be nearly impossible for me to give up the two I shared. Why is that? Do they have control over me? Maybe they do! That shouldn't be! Why do I find myself pulling through the drive-thru when I'm not hungry or logging onto Facebook when I just checked it 10 minutes ago? Maybe I need to let go of those things to see what He can do in my life.
What would I do with all the time I spend on Facebook?
What would I do with the money I save by not eating out or how would my health improve?
And what does God want to show me through that?
I don't think we only have to make a sacrificial decision during Lent. I think it's something we should consider year-round. I think anytime we find ourselves bound to something, whether it's food or a habit or whatever, maybe we should evaluate the why of it.
What would you give up?
Or maybe the question should be, what should you give up?