Personally, I have never participated in Lent. I decided this year that I wanted too try it. I developed a relationship and have known Christianity since a young child. As an adult, I am focused on building a better relationship with God. He is the ultimate power and savior of my life.
So, what I have done for lent is
1. I write down WHAT I AM THANKFUL FOR EVERYDAY in my notes. I did this because some times we get so caught up in what we don't have, where we are and where we should be instead of taking a moment to be THANKFUL for all GOD has given us.
2. I am reading a DAILY BIBLE PLAN that is called Preparing Our Hearts for Easter: A Lenten Devotional which is a 40 day plan. It helps me to study and apply the word of the Bible to my life. It draws me closer to God in the moments where I am seeking him and can take the time to just focus on what he says we should do in our life.
3. I cut out Social Media one day a week. I refrain from even logging into it. Social media can hinder us and really take our eyes off of the prize we have for ourselves because we log on to view everyone else's daily life.
There are many things that people sacrifice and give up during this time such as meats, alcohol, sweets and so forth. It's a time to sacrifice. Each week I want to try and add something else to my list or change it up. And being honest with you all, some people dive right in and then lose their momentum halfway. I wanted to start with something that I knew I could take on first.
I also looked up a few things before doing this and found some really great resources which I loved from upperroom.com :
FASTING: Some people have been known to go without food for days. But that's not the only way to fast. You can fast by cutting out some of the things in your life that distract you from God. Some Christians use the whole 40 days to fast from candy, tv, soft drinks, cigarettes or meat as a way to purify their bodies and lives. You might skip one meal a day and use that time to pray instead. Or you can give up some activity like worry or reality tv to spend time outside enjoying GodÕs creation. What do you need to let go of or "fast" from in order to focus on God? What clutters your calendar and life? How can you simplify your life in terms of what you eat, wear or do?
SERVICE: Some Christians take something on for Christ. You can collect food for the needy, volunteer once a week to tutor children, or work for reform and justice in your community. You can commit to help a different stranger, co-worker or friend everyday of Lent. Serving others is one way we serve God.
PRAYER: Christians also use Lent as a time of intentional prayer. You can pray while you walk, create music or art as a prayer to God, or savor a time of quiet listening. All can be ways of becoming more in tune with God.
Christians from many different traditions celebrate Lent. How will you use the time to grow closer to God?
Top Ten List: THINGS YOU CAN TRY FOR THE LENTEN SEASON
10. Try an electronic fast. Give up TV, Guitar Hero, texting, tweeeting, e-mail and all things electronic for one day every week. (or everyday of Lent!) Use the time to read & pray.
9. Start a prayer rhythm. Say a prayer every time you brush your teeth, hear an ambulance, or check your e-mail. Before you text someone, pray for them.
8. Read one chapter in the Bible each day. (Matthew's a good book to start with. Psalms, too.)
7. Forgive someone who doesn't deserve it (maybe even yourself.)
6. Give up soft drinks, fast food, tea or coffee. Give the money you save to help folks in Haiti or others in crisis.
5. Create a daily quiet time. Spend 30 minutes a day in silence and prayer.
4. Cultivate a life of gratitude. Write someone a thank you letter each week and be aware of how many people have helped you along the way.
3. Be kind to someone each day.
2. Pray for others you see as you walk to and from classes or drive to and from work.
1. Volunteer one hour or more each week with a local shelter, tutoring program, nursing home, prison ministry or aHabitat for Humanity project.