Monday, March 3, 2014

Giving Up

Growing up in the Southern Baptist church, I never participated in Lent.  I don't remember as a child really thinking about the days that led up to Easter.  After participating in a life changing retreat when I was in high school, I became more aware of the tradition of Lent and the idea of contemplating the sacrifice that Jesus gave.

For the first few years of participating in the giving up of something for Lent, I am not sure I really got it.  I gave up red meat one year, was that really a sacrifice, not so much.  One year I gave up saying an annoying phrase I had picked up, did it bring me closer to God, not really.  Last year, my focus changed as I decided instead of giving up something, I would add something to my life.  I decided to be more intentional intentional with my time, my words, my giving.  It was a great experience for me, as I saw the Lord bless me as I was more intentional in loving the people around me.

If you have read my blog for a little while, you probably remember that my word for the year is LESS.  My thoughts on Lent go hand in hand with my word for the year and the meaning behind it.  My ultimate goal is LESS OF ME and MORE OF HIM.  Isn't that what Lent is about?  Getting rid of those things that keep us from fully knowing and understanding how deep His love is for us.

I haven't decided what I will give up or take on this Lenten season and maybe I won't do anything. I want to be sure my heart is in the right place.  When I stop and think about it though, I am pretty sure there are some things that all of us could stand to give up everyday that would make our days a little LESS about us and a little MORE about Him.

Maybe it is time we give up...

Guilt- the past no long binds us...we are free and free indeed!

Doubt- God is who He says he is and He can be trusted.

Impatience- Although I get really frustrated when people say this to me, God's timing is perfect.  He certainly sees the big picture when my view is so narrow.

Comparison- Oh, so much easier said than done.  We all are blessed with unique gifts and talents, why not focus on fostering those in yourself and using them to love and care for others. 

Self-Pity- No doubt we all go through valleys where we feel like holding the world's largest pity party, but no need to dwell there, we are more than conquerors!

Excuses- The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step, take that first step to whatever journey you have before you.  

Fear of Failure-  I used to tell my students that mistakes are stepping stones to learning, learn and move on. 

Worry-  Stop trying to have control of things we can't control.  He takes care of the birds, how much more does He care for you.

Unworthiness- You are beloved, cherished, delighted in, cared for, and most importantly loved. 

Maybe this is more my list than your list.  I know that if I truly gave these things up, my life would be full of more joy, peace, kindness, generosity, happiness, love.  And those things sound so much better. What is time for you to give up?

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful thoughts from a beautiful person! Thanks for your sharing your words of wisdom.


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