Last night as I stared her down in my bed, past my new 10:00 Lenten bed time, her eyes bright, her voice squealing excitement, I had to laugh. An hour and a half later, with the coaxing of a pacifier and a back rub, she finally tired of hands and knees rocking and our late night chat and caved to the sand man.
We’re not getting off to a great start here, baby girl.
With her finally snoozing at 11:30, my attention turned toward The Cougher. Poor little dude. After a drink, some medicine, oils on the feet and chest, and a diffuser refill, he finally settled down at about 2:30. As I left his room again, his sleepy “I love you, Mom,” took away my Tired and kept me from aborting my 6:00 alarm.
I’ve thought long and hard about what I’m “giving up for Lent” this year, and the answer is clear. I must give up me. Namely, my time. I covet my sleep. I covet my quiet evenings after the kids go to bed. I covet my social media minutes that magically turn into hours and end up wasting my day. By handing over wasted time I’m nudged into the beautiful discipline of Lent.
In the “giving up” of anything during these 40 days, there is always much to be gained. Gifts to receive. That’s always how God works, right? We can never match his generosity. He hung his son on a cross! No amount of “giving up” on my part is going to measure up to that one, and He doesn’t need it to. Lent isn’t offered because God needs it. It’s here for me. I need it.
Whatever your vice, whatever your sin… that. That is what to give up for Lent. Give up sin. Gain immeasurable Grace.
To bed by 10, up at 6. Early morning readings and prayer. Habit to some. Laughable to others. Discipline I’ve been lacking, that sometimes threatens to wreck my entire day.
Less of me, more of Him. The ultimate Lenten Gift.
Thoughts on Lenten Seasons past: