- Do you need a Tylenol with your coffee this morning?
- What are you giving up for Lent?
Lent is often seen as a time of denying ourselves as a way to remember the sacrifice that Jesus made at the cross. We fast from pop or television or social media or sweets or coffee in order to share in the suffering of Christ.
The practice of the fast can be beneficial. When you want to reach for that thing that you're abstaining from, it's a good reminder to pray for those who have less than you or who are hurting during this season or whatever it is that you've chosen to pray about. And self-denial is a good practice anyway, especially in a culture that can be very me-focused. Remembering that it's not all about you is a good thing.
But while I do appreciate the fast, I think focusing on what we're giving up is the wrong way to go. Instead, I think we need to think about what it is that we hope to gain from our fasting.
What are you hoping to gain this Lenten season?