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Late for Lent

Life is great.

That said (and there's more to be said on it, to be sure), I'm so far behind in keeping up with everyday life that I haven't yet figured out what kinds of disciplines I might adopt during Lent. While that makes it seem like a losing proposition from the start, it's actually a great first indicator in the annual spiritual exam that Lent is intended to be (a helpful article on Lent is available here). In an effort to make some headway, this morning I reviewed my Lenten disciplines from last year. Fascinating to see where I've grown (and recognize that I have!) and which areas continue to be challenges and obstacles.

So here's a stab at some disciplines and fasts for this season:
  • Read Richard Foster's Celebration of Discipline
  • Dine out no more than twice weekly (unless with others)
  • Have coffee out no more than twice weekly (unless with others)
  • Get up between 6:00 and 7:00 for devotional time on workdays
  • Take lunch between 12:00 and 13:00 on workdays
  • No eating after 19:00 daily (unless with others)
  • No television after 22:00 on workdays (unless in mid-program)
  • No web browsing after 22:00 on workdays
  • Go to bed between 22:00 and 23:00 on workdays
  • Make my bed daily
  • Call family weekly
  • Get together with friends (outside of work and Community Group) weekly
  • Eliminate the "trash tier" of TiVo recordings
  • Record expenses and create a budget
  • Observe a weekly fast day
As I said last year, my main focus is not taking on new things, but letting discipline help me release obstacles to being close to God and living faithfully. Last year addressed the damage multitasking had done to my life and living; this year I'm using some of the same limits and placing some new ones with a focus on creating more space, more margin, and even more stillness and silence. Sometimes I'll readily admit how desperately I need these things, but most of the time I live as if I'm desperately afraid of them. There's truth in both, and it's likely that I can discover much of what's really going on with my relationship with God there, too.

Comments

Helpful indeed.
My fast from coffee seems very surface and simple after reading that article. Though I've been (and maybe always am) hyperaware of my faults, including areas I need to trust God in lately.

I appreciate your view on the subject.:)
letting discipline help me release obstacles to being close to God and living faithfully

yeah. :o]

Would you make my bed when you're done?
Our church was selling Celebration of Discipline a few years ago. I decided to really focus on one chapter at a time. So far I've mostly focused on the fasting chapter, and a little bit of the chapter on prayer. Maybe I'll explore another during Lent.