With Lent coming soon, I need something to post by my computer to remind me to "try to be good" to paraphrase the title of a Sanford Phippen book from Maine.
I've been thinking about Lent, too. It's just around the corner! We have just about a week to get it together and figure out what we're going to give up.
I'm really torn this year, as I would like to give up sweets. It would be a huge sacrifice for me, as I have quite the sweet tooth, or, what's left of a sweet tooth after all that sugar. If I don't want St. Apollonia as my new patron saint, I'll have to do something about my intake of corn syrup.
But... I don't believe in giving up something for Lent that you need to do anyhow. Want to quit smoking and go on a diet? Do it on your own time. This season is about you and God, not about you and your waist size. At the end of Lent, you should be saying, "Wow, I have a much closer relationship with God now!" Not, "Wow, look how great I look in these jeans! Thank you, God!"
So, if I do give up sugar, I'll have to just do that and find something else to give up. That will make it an extra difficult Lent. Won't I be a joy to be around? I'll have to be a joy to be around, anyhow. It doesn't do any good to give something up and then go around acting like a bear being poked with a stick. That's the whole trick to Lent.
So perhaps for your computer screen you should put on there, "Be joyful!" This won't work unless you've done something that makes you suffer, though. If you're one of the Kum By Yah Lenters, you'll have to take another tactic.
"Be Good" is a rather vague, if not impossible, statement. Come on, Lent is all about digging deeper. You're going to have to at least take a stab at determining what exactly would make you a better person. Again, this isn't about your nail biting habit. What's the one big change you could stand to make?
And then, what steps do you have to take to make that change? Need to be more charitable? You don't have to become St. Francis of Assisi overnight. But you can examine how you can be more charitable each day. Perhaps your computer screen could say, "Got Charity?"
Maybe you should make a list of things that could go on there and change them every few days or so:
Eat Humble Pie
Go the Extra Mile
Find More Gratitude
Wear Unattractive Clothes This Week
Give Some Things Away
Go to Confession
Put Yourself Last
You get the idea. You can tailor your list to your own shortcomings. I'm sure our readers have some thoughts on the subject.
Again, I'm all for the old "give something up". Make it count.
Good Egg is from Paloma's Nest