So it seems my calculations were a bit off as to when “Lent” actually begins. I don’t know why but I always assumed that it “officially” started the day after Ash Wednesday…not on Ash Wednesday….and it appears I was wrong…oops! Anyway one thing I’ve been thinking about since we did the 30 hour famine a few weekends ago, is that “sacrifice without meditation is just starvation”…basically the idea that we can “give things up” for God or a cause, but if we are not also using that time to seek God/that cause, all we are really doing is depriving ourselves. With that in mind I decided that this Lenten season I not only am going to fast from something (this year it’s soda), but that I am also going to be more intentional about seeking God.
It’s no secret….okay so maybe it is….that lately I’ve been struggling a lot with what I believe. Not that I don’t believe in God (cause I do), but I am just not sure that all the things we say about him and how we are to follow him are so “right and wrong” or “black and white”. I think it’s a combination of things that have brought me to this place. Hearing people debate to the death that God is for America/Republicans/conservatives/etc and thus must be against other nations/Democrats/liberal/etc (as if the bible doesn’t say god so loved the “world”)….struggling with forgiveness and love towards certain family members (all the while being told that it’s a “sin” not to forgive and that if I don’t do it I can’t be forgiven by God thus making any attempt to know God futile)…traveling into the city each week to tutor and then feeling horrible for getting in my car and driving back to the comforts of the suburbs all the while leaving behind kids who are stuck in their situation because of someone elses choice….talking about community and wondering how it comes about and what it even looks like in this day and age, while at the same time struggling to trust people….feeling like I can’t raise these questions or ideas without people debating me into believing what they believe or thinking that I am less of a Christan (or worse not a Christian at all) for struggling with these thoughts.....or even reading books by people who have the same questions/thoughts/ideas and feeling like maybe it's okay to explore them.
So what I’ve decided to do is spend the next 40 days…or is it 46/45 days…truly meditating on these things and figuring out…or at least beginning to figure out (because let’s be honest this is more like a lifelong project)… what exactly it is I believe and why I believe it. Honestly some parts of this journey are personal…so much so that I have decided not to share it all on here…however there’s a large chuck that I am sure I will be sharing so I invite you to come along with me on this journey…and spend lent not just “starving” but truly growing!