Sunday, February 22, 2009
Lent - Giving Up
Lent begins this Wednesday and traditionally days prior to the season I'm thinking, "What should I give up for Lent?" Growing up catholic this is inbred in me. Dave, however, holds to the Protestant protestation, "It's not about what you can give up, it's about what Christ did for you!"
In my dieting-new-way-of-eating-not-just-a-diet-but-a-life-changing-eating-plan I initially gave up coffee. I realized after a few weeks how much I love coffee. I love the grinding of the beans, the sound of the machine percolating, the smell emanating from the pot, the taste... I love coffee. Since I forbade desserts I decided giving up coffee was too much sacrifice and the act might eventually sabotage my new-way-of-eating plan. So I'm back on coffee. It hasn't ruined me. It's my way of keeping me sane. But this Lent I am giving up coffee.
One of the purposes of giving something up for Lent is so we can identify with Christ's sufferings. But I think a more specific reason, for me at least, is to identify with the separation Jesus and the Father felt/experienced. I will be without my favorite beverage for 40 days. I will survive but every morning while I inhale that rich aroma from Dave's mug I will be reminded that Jesus willingly came to earth as a man, humbled himself as a man, making himself nothing. That separation was his suffering. For eternity ( a concept I can not comprehend) Jesus and the Father were one and then willingly they were not - for our sake, for my sake.
In thanks, in communion with the Savior, I give up coffee. It's a pittance. It's a widow's mite.