Lenten Plans

Thank you for the love on yesterday’s post, but now for the nitty-gritty.  I’ve been trying to figure out how to better focus my Lenten plans for the last couple of weeks without them turning into “New Year’s Resolutions”.  There are many things I’d still love to challenge myself to give up – my caffeine and sugar habits come to mind immediately, but that’s not something that’s going to strengthen my walk with God this year.  It might be just what I need in years to come, but not this year.

I do love a good list and I found myself wishing there was such a thing for Lent – some easy way to help me narrow down what I was doing while making sure that I was covering all the bases.

So late one night I found myself talking about the Christmas rhyme about “Want, Need, Wear, Read” and thought – Wow – I wish I had something like that for Lent.  Something easy to remember that challenges me to delver a little deeper yet keep things simple at the same time.

So I give you – the Lent Rhyme:

Something to Leave:  This is something to leave behind as we enter into lent – a bad habit, a favorite food, a time consuming activity.  Anything that would challenge you for the better to be without for a while.

Something to Give:  This is the alms giving and charity category.  The focusing giving to others whether it is your (as we hear too much in church sometimes) Time, Treasure or Talents.

Something to Read:  This is, hopefully, self-explanatory.  It can be a book, a daily reading, prayer.  Anything written that will help you grow in your faith or your understanding of it.

Something to Live:  This, ideally, would be a personal focus – think of it like the “Words” everyone likes to pick instead of resolution.  It is something to guide you each day as you encounter your job, your friends, your family and yourself.  This should be a challenge.

For me my Lenten season shapes up to look a little like this:

  • Something to Leave:  An overabundance of food.  I am going to try to eat simpler meals, adhere to our fasts, and challenge myself to really take a good look at food as an excess in our home.
  • Something to Give:  This year I just want to focus on being more charitable all around, but I want to emphasis giving to our church which is something I fail at almost completely.
  • Something to Read:  I have this, this and this on my list of Lenten Reading this year.
  • Something to Live:  I was to live my faith more fully – this is multifaceted.  I want to share my faith with those around me by being open about my beliefs, feasting, fasting, etc. whether that is by being more honest face to face or online.  I want to walk in my faith more completely, including improving my Mass attendance record.

Feel free to use the image above if this gives you ideas for your own Lenten journey and link back and comment to let me know what you’re doing!

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