Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Why I, a Mormon, Observe Lent

Lent is upon us again. Every year as this season comes around, I find myself examining my life and reflecting on what I should be giving up for Lent. And every year I do come up with something.

But, in our theology and practice, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints don't observe Lent. It's not a part of our religion at all. However, when I learned more about Lent, I decided that it was part of the good that could be brought, however informally, into our lives.

You see, Lent in it's most basic form is temporarily giving up something in order to draw closer to God.

In some cases you can use Lent as a kick start to give up a vice, such as smoking, that you would like to give up permanently. Or maybe you've noticed that you are spending too much time doing something that has potential to take over your life, so you want to break the habit before it gets out of control (such as playing video games).

I love the idea of taking some time to ponder my life (which I do a lot anyway). And take a specific focus on what I can do to become closer to God.

If you don't believe in God, you can take the opportunity to give up something or work on something to help you come closer to your true self, or be more in tune with nature, or to simplify your life. You can think of it as an update to New Year Resolutions as well. Only with Lent, you don't have to do it permanently, just for 40 days.

Need Ideas of What to Give Up?
Really it can be pretty much anything. One year I gave up naps, it nearly killed me too. Chocolate, sweets in general, is popular. I've known several people who give up their social media sites, like Facebook and Instagram, as well. The nice thing is that it is personal! You pick whatever it is that you feel is holding you back personally, and give that up or work on improving it.

I hope that those of you out there who don't observe Lent have gained some insight into it, and will consider perhaps trying it out one year. You'd be surprised at the good it can do in your life.

No comments:

Post a Comment