Ok, so the title may be a bit misleading since I’m not sure that “winning” Lent is a thing. But, hey, “How to Have the Best Lent Ever” was already taken. (#thanksmatthewkelly).
Anyways….am I the only person that Lent totally snuck up on?! I can’t be. Please just say no to make me feel better about myself! I feel like we wrapped up Christmas a week ago – probably because I literally just put away my nativity set last week. No joke. It’s a Fontini, there are a lot of pieces, and I’m lazy.
Needless to say, I’m having to do a little bit of scrambling this year to figure out what personal sacrifices/disciplines I really want to work on. And all of this really has had me thinking about every other Lent and how I always treat Lent as some sort of opportunity to get my life in order (as if that’s a thing you can do in 40 days). Like, “this is the year that I’m going to develop a solid prayer life” or “this is the year that I’m going to REALLY sacrifice.” But every year it never sticks and I find myself right back where I was the year before. Does that sound like you, too?
What if we took an “in it to win it” approach with Lent? Like “Here I am Lord – I am all in!” How would that transform the way that you approach Lent?
I think that, for me, that would make me much more susceptible to saying “yes” to the Lord in the small things, to bearing the small annoyances that come at me on a day to day basis with more humility and love. I think that that could inspire me to really challenge myself this Lenten Season – to really buckle down and make this year different.
SO – I’ve decided to challenge myself to do something in each area of spiritual disciple that the Church gives us during the season of Lent. To help myself focus on the whole package. Because Lord, I’m all in. I’m in it to win it. This isn’t about making some grand sacrifice for the sake of making a grand sacrifice. It’s not about “besting” everyone with how awesome I am. This is about Jesus. What is really going to draw me closer to Christ? What is going to enable me to cling to him as he makes his journey towards the cross?
Now for some of you, this may mean doing something crazy – for others maybe not. Keep in mind, that in some seasons of life, the simple things like getting up with the baby without punching your husband who is peacefully sleeping through the screaming – that is a grand gesture for the Lord! Or If you feel so called, do something crazy! As long as you are making it for the LORD and not to boost your own sense of self-worth. (She says as she posts her Lenten resolutions to the internet…) The right sacrifice for one person isn’t going to be the right sacrifice for another. There isn’t a right way to do this. As long as we are remaining true to our own personal calling and growing in our own relationship with Christ that’s how we win at Lent!
Just like I did for Advent, I went ahead and made a little printable to help myself (and now you!) get my head in the game! Feel free to print this off and follow along! Check it out here!
I’m obsessed with this thing, guys! It’s gorgeous. And I love that there are multiple opportunities for reflection daily and it walks you through Lectio Divina.
I also LOVE that they provide free resources for your children that correspond with the prayer journal so your children can follow along with you if you so choose. Or you could do the reflection on your own and then do some with your kids later in the day. So many opportunities and I love reccomending things that are versatile!
I did a hard thing, you guys. I can’t believe I did it, and in the process I totally regretted it, but I’m really banking on this bearing some serious fruit in my relationship with Christ and in my relationship with my family.
I asked my HUSBAND what he thought I needed to give up/work on this year.
He is a smart man and said nothing about dirty dishes or clean laundry. Rather, he asked that I make a conscious effort to be more happy and content with what we have.
Totally a fair request, and one that I’m going to honor. It’s funny because I had actually been thinking of going on some type of “no spending spree” where I don’t buy anything except things that are actual necessities. I wanted to do it mostly to save money (because that’s the purpose of Lent, right?) – but I think that that would aline really nicely with what my husband is asking.
I’ll keep you updated on how this is going. 🙂
Almsgiving is the traditional word used for…wait for it…giving.
This one always gets me because in almost every list I see it’s like, “collect money for this charity,” “let your kids do extra chores to earn money for this charity,” “donate items to this charity.”
MAMA IS ON A BUDGET!
In all seriousness, I’d love to be able to give my money to everyone but I can’t – my children need to eat! (And they eat a lot of food!) And I’m sure that many of you are the same way.
But there is one thing I can work on in this area that doesn’t necessarily have to cost me money. You see, I have a really bad habit of clinging to “my” things too tightly. Like I’m weirdly possessive of what is “mine.” I blame it on the fact that I’m a first born child and the only girl. (Yeah mom – it’s all your fault! Jk. That’s a joke. Please laugh? I love you!) So this year I am praying that the Lord provides me with the opportunity to be more generous with what I have and to give not just from my excess, and to trust that the Lord will take care of me.
Other ideas – what about GIVING more of ourselves? What about making sure that when we are present we are actually PRESENT? What about GIVING random acts of love and kindness?
No money involved! Unless you want money to be involved – that’s cool too. You do you, friend. 🙂
So get out there and win it, you guys!
Also, can we make #winatlent a thing? I searched it on Instagram and there is nothing. Let’s claim it! Share using that hashtag all throughout Lent and let me know how you are growing closer to the Lord this year!