Today is Fat Tuesday. For us Catholics, that means Lent begins tomorrow. For the past four years of my life, I have not truly committed to Lent the way I would have liked. I often blame it on having friends that were not Catholic, but when it comes down to it, it was because I was a lazy college student who didn't want to grow up. This year, as I have grown spiritually these past few months, I have spent many days contemplating and preparing for Lent.
For those who have no idea what I'm speaking of... Lent is a 40-day liturgical season that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Easter. Easter. Lent has long been a tradition in the Christian Church, and it is thought that the tradition of the 40 days reflects the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert, fasting and being tempted by the Devil. Lent is considered a time of penance and discipline. It is a time to make sacrifices, as Jesus did for us so that we can live freely. This year, I will be working hard to spend these 40 days contemplating, praying, and fasting from certain foods/items.
-No Meat. It is typical to not eat meat on Friday's during Lent, but myself and my roomates are giving it up all together.
-No going out to eat. This won't be too hard since it doesn't happen often anyways, but still a sacrifice.
-Limiting technology. As a community, we are implementing a Wednesday Night Community Night where we spend time together without the tv or internet. For myself, this means giving up facebook and twitter. I know I tried it once before and failed, but this will truly be the hardest sacrifice I can make, so I'm going to do it for Lent. It will take prayer and personal strength, but I can do it.
-Spend a 1/2 hour-hour each night before bed in silent prayer, doing self examination with reflection with God.
Another thing we're doing as a community is pretty cool and exciting: we're going to take away $100 of the $590 we get each month for food and money, and if it comes down to it and we really do "need" that $100, we'll use it, but if we don't, we're going to donate it to charity. We've saved $1000 so far this year with money we haven't used, so we might as well start doing something effective with extra money. We're thinking about donating to each of our sites, which would be really cool. We'll see.
Today has been alright. I didn't get a lot of sleep last night and have had some thoughts running through my mind all day, but other than that...I'm alive, I'm healthy, and I'm ready for a good Lent.
It will be a looooooooooong 40 days without Facebook/Twitter, but I will survive. email me, call me, text me. I'll be around.
Song of the day: