Does Resurrection Confusion Make Me A Poser?
MOM: “Do you know what lent is?”
DAUGHTER: “Uh yeah, it’s what comes out of the dryer.”
True story by my friend.
When a recovering perfectionist meets religion – trouble comes. I think this is the reason I run from things like Lent. If I have to cut something out or “do something” for X days. I ignore it. That’s terrible, but honest. I think I shy away from anything that smells like religion or legalism when I want to so desperately live my faith and life from a place of grace and authentic love of my creator. Plus, I have never been a fan of depriving myself of anything. And I don’t like pain, sweat or dirt. That’s another topic.
The above statements are not necessarily based on truth – just how I have processed this particular time of year in my head. Often, I take good things and then get confused or distorted without doing proper research … or huh, asking GOD!
If I did proper research and asked God what he wanted me to do. I’d probably have a different approach. I’d probably willingly sacrifice something in his honor and properly focus on his ultimate sacrifice.
I think the weight of what he did for me overwhelms me. I think the weight of communicating it well to my kids overwhelms me.
I know I get frozen in figuring it out and do nothing. What if I just make a step? And what if I was satisfied with knowing Jesus and growing? Not doing it all just perfectly.
The truth is that he gave a tremendous sacrifice for my life and yours. This season of lent the days leading up to the resurrection are a big deal. They are a lot to digest. However, what we do or don’t do – doesn’t make or break our relationship with our Savior. It doesn’t hinge on this. In my opinion, it’s another chance we get to know him better and stop and reflect. To properly put things in alignment. I don’t believe in works. I believe in grace.
Frankly, if we believe in Jesus – we all should care about this time of year.
What if some of us took pressure off ourselves?
What if some of us dove in this year to Lent with a genuine heart?
- What if it wasn’t so public and not so much about what we did?
- What if we privately chose to take away something or sacrifice for these days and told no one – and prayed through that struggle as a way to honor our Lord and get closer to Him?
- What if we asked God to search our hearts – and reveal something we might should give up that would hurt? A true sacrifice.
- What if we took this time to center our breakfast or dinner discussions around God? Our church suggested praying one word/virtue of Phillippians 4:8 every day.
- If you want a family activity – try this Lenten Tree idea I shared a couple years back or try this great new resource by Oh Amanda.
- You might also consider the #LentChallenge with Margaret Feinberg and read the New Testament
Or, ask HIM! What does He have for you during this time? He probably wants nothing FROM you and so much FOR you. He probably just wants you. Your love, your attention. Your time with Him. He doesn’t want a performance or perfection.
Ah, his grace is real and feels so good to hear it and feel it.
I don’t think my confusion around this times makes me a poser … makes me real and broken. Makes me in need of my Savior and probably perfectly positioned as I enter this Lenten season. (did I even say that right? someone with ashes on their head – help me!)
With all respect, love and vulnerability – Courtney
I really like your Lent perspective. Last year instead of giving something up, I decided to get more serious about a daily devotional. My Lent promise was to read my devotional BEFORE allowing myself to check Facebook/Personal Email/Pinterest, etc. I seem to find the time in my day for these relaxing activities and felt that I should be able to find a few minutes to spend time in scripture. I slipped a few times, but having the reminder made me close my Facebook prowling and open up my devotion app.
Today I took a Buzzfeed quiz on what to give up for Lent. It came back with Nothing. I think that was a hint to start something, so back I go with my devotional. Maybe I’ll make it longer than 40 days this go around.
Gosh – I am so guilty of that .Great reminder.
sharon. amen sister. i am so guilty of this.
Beautiful post, Courtney! Thank you for the #LentChallenge shout out!
thanks margaret. hope you are feeling great. think of you often.
Inspired by Light ‘Em Up… Last year I got together with mums and friends and started up a Lent Challenge we call Love 40 days. Not so much about giving something up but giving up something of yourself. I just knew if my kids gave up chocolate I had 40 days of whining about chocolate which would make us all less Christlike. We had a great time loving our friends, family and random strangers last year and my son leapt out of bed excited to start loving for Lent yesterday – thank you Lord! There’s an accompanying daily devotional thought at http://www.love40days.blogspot.com if anyone wants to join the journey…
Sarah – this is so encouraging I love it! I will go check it out. Wonderful!
sarah – how cool! thanks for sharing. so neat.
“I think the weight of what he did for me overwhelms me. I think the weight of communicating it well to my kids overwhelms me.” – yes yes. It took me til college to understand that weight and significance so I often worry about how a child can grasp it. Thanks for encouraging us to go for it and trust the One who made them more than our own words!
Also! I love the suggestion up giving up something that’s a true sacrifice and telling no one. Matthew 6! Giving up something for Lent has rubbed me the wrong way in the past. I realized a few years ago it was the showiness of it all. Why do I need to know what you gave up? Feel great for you? bad for myself? I felt both so I dismissed it as inauthentic. “I think I shy away from anything that smells like religion or legalism when I want to so desperately live my faith and life from a place of grace and authentic love of my creator.” – you. So I tried it last year and it brought freedom! Thank you for all these suggestions and YOUR authenticity.
thanks my friend. was truly scared i would offend a few. but the chance to free some outweighs the fear and risks.
Hi there! Love your blog! It’s an invaluable resource! I’m an Orthodox Christian mom of three & I love learning from faith filled moms like you! God Bless your efforts! So, I have something to add to this Lenten conversation… In our tradition, we follow a pretty strict Lenten fast- but- I love it! It is difficult at times bc you have to think a little longer about what’s for dinner – gotta keep it yummy 🙂 but… It really turns your focus away from food and deprivation … You turn your focus on feeding your soul rather than your belly… It’s a private personal time with your Creator.It is beyond a challenge, it’s beyond a cleansing detox, it’s beyond that… You empty yourself to allow Gods Grace to fill you! Lent is a beautiful thing!
thanks for your sweet comment Kallie and terrific input!
thank you for your sweet comments kallie! i LOVE ‘feeding your soul rather than your belly” – great stuff.
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