I will continue blogging for Lent, but I am not going to look at the site’s visitor stats and I will close comments*. I am so appreciative of all the wonderful, kind and thought-provoking comments I get on this blog…but my tendency toward pride makes it very easy for me to cross the line between appreciating comments and requiring them to feel at peace about what I write. Similarly, I’ve noticed that seeing how many readers and links I have through Sitemeter can be a slippery slope for me: I used to check it only once a month or so, and that somehow turned into once a week, which turned into a couple times a week, which turned into once a day. I could use a fast in that department. (I did this last year and wrote about some of the results here).
In case anyone’s interested, I’m also giving up:
- All TV except EWTN (and a show that my mom and I enjoy following together, though I’ll only watch it if it’s with her for “bonding” time).
- All foods made from wheat.
In the spiritual growth department, I plan to:
- Continue with the Liturgy of the Hours (although that continues to work so well on a practical level that it hardly feels like it’s something special for Lent).
- Not indulge in feelings of being frustrated / annoyed with other people.
- Not indulge in feelings of worry / anxiety / annoyance / stress about future events. Though ideally I wouldn’t do that ever, I really want to focus on not worrying about future events since, as I wrote about here, an unbelievable percentage of the things I feel stressed out about have not even happened yet, and they almost always turn out better than expected (if they happen at all).
For those last two commitments, the words indulge in are operative. One of the best lessons I’ve learned from St. Francis de Sales is the concept that there is no sin or malice from an idea simply popping into your head, so long as you reject it (more on that in the last part of this post). So, for example, my Lenten commitment with that last bullet point is not to completely avoid ever having thoughts like “It’s going to be SO horrible and difficult to take all three kids to that event we have to go to!”, but rather to reject them and not dwell on them when they do come to mind.
The next 40 days are not typically ones that people look forward to, but I am actually really excited about it. This will be my first Lent as a Catholic, and one of the first since I came to know that God exists and to understand that the celebration of the Resurrection of his Son is something worth setting aside 40 days to prepare for.
* I don’t think there’s a way to close comments on all old posts, so I’ll just avoid reading any new comments to old posts until after Lent.
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