Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Acts of The Christian Lent

Mind the Craving
Today, I was out doing one of my support work facilitating a group. It was not a religious group, far from it. But one of the ladies bothered to get my view about her system of keeping the Lent. We are going to have a light lunch, and she will partake but have had a thought about what others think about her eating...

It returned my thought to the days past when I used to teach Bible Studies. I cant remember how recent someone ever approached me in this form and manner and sought my opinion. And since giving up Christianity - in fact all forms of worshipping or whatever anyway - I have rarely been approached in this manner. 

I did not respond that I am not a Christian so would not want to discuss the issue. But also, I did not tell her that I am here to do a sort of social (or civil) support work and not religious. But it pricked my mind to think deeper; and like a politician I shared a panel recently, put on my 'Christian hat'.

Lent is not particularly a time to starve. Although the memorial is linked to the time of Jesus in the 'Wilderness' where Satan tempted him. The Bible added that Jesus fasted 40 days and nights during this period. But that physical aspect isnt the core lesson in that act.

Lent is a time of discipline. And that comes in the shape of denial. It is a time you make sacrifice and put your allegiance to
your God ahed of everything else. Doing that means you can observe Lent by denying yourself those (or one) things that you know matters most. And thus food may come under this category.

Considering what we know now, it may not be wise to give up food especially if you live with certain conditions. But you can give up other particular cravings you have. And this is where the denial, discipline, sacrifice and allegiance comes in. 

So as you hear Lent, dont think it is all about giving up food. Dont think its all about taking *shit*. Its far beyond those.

Instead it is about rejecting the allure to material reliance, seduction, cravings, and all that is worldly. Things that make you think nothing else except you have them. That material item that you feel you cannot do without... Lent is lending your heart to your religious (or spiritual) focus. And this is all summed up in one word; humility.

In keeping Lent, it is not the outward act that makes it up, but the inward decision and secrifice. However both act counts and compliments each other. So in whatever extent you are able to keep and do Lent, it is necessary that you can find these acts in your life:
  • Dedication
  • Sacrifice
  • Discipline
  • Allegiance
  • Denial - not of fairness, or respect or the truth nor of the disregard of others. But of material focus
  • Humility.
Thus the lunatic fanatic Apostle Paul in one of his few truths said, it is the "love of money that is the root of [all] evil". 

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