Saturday, February 21, 2009

changing my thoughts on Lent

Lent is one of the seasons that always seems difficult to observe. If you don't observe Lent, the tradition is to give something up during the time between Ash Wednesday and Easter. Common things to give up include: soda, chocolate, meat, tv, etc. But sometimes it feels like we are just depriving ourselves if we do that- the only thing we get out of it is having to explain to our friends why we "can't have that." So, do we get anything out of it besides feeling deprived of something we love? Hopefully the answer is yes. But I think many times, we fail to see what good we're doing, or what kind of impact our 40-day "fast" is making.

As with most every year, I've been trying to figure out what to do for Lent. I've done the soda and chocolate fasts in the past and have been successful. I've even tried adding on something- a devotion/quiet time every day during lent, and have been less successful. A few days ago it finally hit me. I need to change my thoughts on Lent. Sorry, this is just a clever play on words. This year, I'm giving up change for Lent. Yes, pocket change.

If you're like me you rarely pay cash for expenses...and even less frequently carry change to pay for things. Over the past few years, I have compiled quite the coin collection rather unintentionally. I have a change bowl, lots of change in my car, change at my office, pennies in a bag, and even sorted change... So, after Ash Wednesday, I'm going to start a new change bowl. Any change I get from paying in cash will go in that bowl and after Easter I will donate it to a charity of my choice. It may not be much, but I feel like I am sacrificing something, and that sacrifice will hopefully benefit more than me.

Anyone else want to join me? Let me know. Oh, and if you do- consider carrying cash and paying with cash more often...instead of avoiding it so you don't have to give it away.

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