Now, for the record, I give a LOT of thought and prayer to Lent. It is supposed to be a sacrifice...it's SUPPOSED to hurt! To encourage you to deny physical cravings, get past your false idols and to turn to God. Prayer and fasting, clinging to God with everything you have and submitting your will to Him! I pray, a LOT, to sort out what lessons I'm supposed to learn and what I have to do in order to prepare myself for the path God has set for me to travel. I always look forward to the focus and contemplation and prayer and quietness and revelry of the entire season. This year, as with years past, I will be 'giving up' several things, because I always tend to get caught up in the materialistic and I have to separate my wants from my needs and also, because I need to come to a place where I am completely humbled so that I might be grateful for everything I have and to learn and be reminded of how to be a good steward of ALL that God has blessed me with! Now that that explanation is out of the way, here is 'The List' for Lent 2013!
1)PALEO diet!! Yes, that's right! Paleo for Lent. I was planning on following the autoimmune protocol or sugar detox, however, after discussing it with some more 'seasoned' paleo peeps, I worry that the more extreme restriction would affect my milk supply, and would be too much on my system while breastfeeding.
2)I will not be purchasing anything new. Let me clarify because I can already hear the "wait, what?!". Obviously, some things have to be traditionally purchased from a store...I'm going to buy toilet paper and such and obviously New Underwear goes without saying! However, if I can borrow something that is my top option. After that, I feel like purchasing from a resale or thrift shop is the next best option.
3)I will engage in daily exercise. This is a routine I have fallen out of, and I'm paying DEARLY for it! I want to do the Norseman Xtreme Triathlon in 2 years time. Therefore, in order to accomplish my goals AND be a better steward of the body God has given me, Its time to get off my behind!!
4)I will limit my time online to 14 hours per week. This may seem like quite a bit to some people, but since I have an online business and this blog, That is actually quite a small amount. It will be limited to one hour in the morning before my children get up, and one hour in the evening.
5)I will have 3 no money days a week! In an effort to curb unneccesary spending there will be 3 days a week in which no money can be spent. This includes something as simple as change for a soda machine.
6)I am working on my self-care/hygeine routine. Not giving in to vanity, but focusing on presenting an image that glorifies God, blue hair and all! :D
7)Getting back into the routine of Giving to charity and church.
8)I will engage in Daily Prayer. Real Prayer, not 'oh God, if this traffic doesn't clear up I'm gonna kill someone!'
9)I will make a point to spend special alone time with each kid every day.
10)I will be purging my house of unneccesary clutter! My goal is to take at least 20 FULL industrial sized garbage bags worth of items to goodwill or friends garage sales.
11)I will stop speaking negatively. I will watch my tongue and not let negative words or harsh tones come out of my mouth. Moods and attitudes are contagious, and I don't want to pass negativaty along!
12)I will only use reuseable grocery bags! No more plastic bags!
13)To REALLY try to separate myself from 'keeping up appearances', I'll be doing a little modesty 'challenge'. Making a point to cover my hair when out and about, as well as keeping covered from collarbone to elbows to knees.
WHEW!! What a list. I know. The point is to turn things around completely, bring my world to a screeching halt, burn off the fluff and come to what is really important! I hope you all will consider taking part in Lent in SOME form, whether its as simple as being more prayerful or just being nicer to your neighbors.
As always, I really do this for me! I need it and it helps me to focus on my relationship with God. If you would like some other information You can check out THIS great post at Kitchen Stewardship!! There is loads of information on everything from recipes to decorating to sacrifice and suffering. Also, this post from Passionate Homemaking has 24 GREAT ideas on making Lent and Easter a complete family affair! It also has links to even MORE resources! I hope you all find some way to make Lent and Easter meaningful and reverent for your family!
In My Weakness, He Is Strong