Once the pancakes have been consumed, thoughts turn to Lent and the question of what to give up. I have given up chocolate( five times), biscuits(twice), desserts (once), shopping for clothes(once) over the years. Sometimes my motivation has been a mixture of wanting to focus on Jesus and build up to Easter remembrance and sometimes there has been a bit of a hidden diet plan in there too.
I am often intrigued by the non- believers I meet who are happy to tell me that they are giving up something for lent, without any thought of visiting a church or thinking about Jesus! An interesting cultural pull!
This year, I have thought long and hard and I think I am going to give up Church committee meetings for Lent. They are taking up far too many of my mornings, afternoons and evenings. Although they are often with lovely people talking about worthwhile things, the hours I spend in Christian meetings take me away from time with my family and take me out of the ‘real world’ of my neighbours, friends and work colleagues. How would my life look if for forty days I said ‘ yes’ to my friends and ‘ no’ to church agenda planners?
Three weeks ago a dear friend called and asked me to go to the cinema with her. Despite the fact that she usually kindly accepts my invitations to her to go to outreach events, I declined , apologising on the basis that I had too many other meetings that week. It was true, I had a church commitment every other night. But, it wasn’t a great excuse and I feel that I let her down.
Starting tomorrow, forty days, no church committee meetings, extra time for others. Activate my life for lent!
Thoughts? Comments?

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  • Caroline East

    Do tell us how it goes. I’d love to join you, but being as I’m paid to work for my church, I guess I better be there!

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