After my photo project, I was asked by a few people to keep writing and sharing. I found it really touching that people thought so much of what I had already shared and I promised to share something on a weekly basis (with a picture). This "something" will be absolutely anything I choose (unless you provide suggestions/questions, of course!)
Before I begin today's post, I want to say this: Religion and faith are two very different things, at least in my mind. I don't want to go into religion here. It's not the place and religion isn't something that moves me or inspires me or makes me believe in something more. Faith does all of this. Faith brings Life to my soul.
I have been giving a lot of thought to Lent these days, being that tomorrow is Ash Wednesday and I have already been asked what I am going to give up or what I am going to add in.
Here's the thing, I really like Lent. A lot. In this crazy fast-paced, 24/7 world, Lent is a time where I find more time to stop, more time to quiet my mind, more time to be present in the world. I "bother" with Lent because, for me, it's not about the suffering or the denial or the fasting or the ashes. Lent is more than just 40 days without chocolate or TV or Facebook. It's 40 days of reflection and searching and faith. It's a "spring cleaning" for my soul.
I am giving up sugar because I am completely addicted to it. Completely. And because I want to learn to respond to things like stress and anger and boredom in more constructive, positive, faith-filled ways than by simply reaching for another piece of chocolate. Lately, I have been so sad and I have been filling the sadness with things that never actually fill me at all.
I am adding in prayer because I have been so busy I can't hear my Self anymore. I have been feeling lost and lonely. I believe that prayer will give my soul the comfort it so sorely needs. I believe in God and angels and Something bigger than myself and my world. I have not been giving my faith the room it needs to spread its wings. Lent gives me that time, if I allow it.
And after I have shared all of this, I have to say, I think I love Lent because it ends in Easter and Easter is my very favorite holiday. A very wise friend said one Lent a few years ago, "Easter is about Hope and Easter is coming." Every soul needs hope to live. I live in hope and I am looking forward to 40 beautiful hope-filled days.