Yesterday (Ash Wednesday) was the first day of lent. On this day Catholics usually start their lent with fasting, church, and Lenten promises. Because of my health, I didn’t fast and wasn’t able to make it to church. I was feeling the “Catholic guilt” vibe and was having a hard time deciding how to prepare myself for Easter this year. A friend visited me with a lovely supper and even better words of support. She also told me that Ash Wednesday isn’t even a holy day of obligation (I always thought it was!).
So on the first day of lent, I did an extraordinary thing! I let my guilt go. It was freeing and gave me clarity. I also got the idea to give something up every day of the 40 days of lent this year, to prepare myself for Easter.
Would you like to join me? Here’s the plan:
- Forgive yourself for whatever you are holding on to (this could be mental, or physical). That is your one thing for the first day (yesterday).
- Make a commitment to prepare your heart, home and soul for Easter.
- Join me everyday as we give up more, to prepare for Easter. That means on day two, today, we will give up two things. Tomorrow, we will give up three things, etc. so our letting go will increase everyday.
- By Easter this year you will have given up over 800 things!
For today, lets look for two religious items that we can let go. Before you say this is contrary to the spirit of the season, try it. Look through what you have. You probably have a statue or rosary (or twenty) that is broken beyond repair, a stack of religious cards or pictures that no one looks at, palms from three years ago, some candles that are mostly burnt, or just multiple copies of a religious book in your home. Is too much stuff getting in between you and God?
Throw away, burn, bury, or give away items as appropriate. Then set up, or clean up a small prayer area, or altar in your home with the really wonderful pieces that you decided to keep. Every time you let something go, you are given something in return. Sometimes it is more space or peace of mind. Sometimes it is that you find something that you forgot that you already had. Or sometimes it is just that you have a higher appreciation for something.
Lent the AMAZINGLY SIMPLE way!
P.S. Let me know you are joining me by leaving a comment below!