Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Making Sense Out of Lent

I have been discerning for the past month what I should do to make this Lent fruitful.  And I think I've finally got it down.  You see, I stink at making sacrifices and can usually weasel my way out of Lenten fasts most years.  "Oh I'm pregnant, no fasting required!" "I'm breastfeeding, so the baby needs chocolate!"  "I have six kids, that's sacrifice enough!"  Basically, I'm a slave to comfort.  If Lent were a vacation, it should be a camping trip in a tent with no running water or electricity.  But my Lent usually looks more like a trip to Disney World where I skip dessert one night, because, after all it's Lent.

So, I need a good Lent, and good = hard.  I need to deny myself to the point of discomfort so that I can align myself to Our Lord's ultimate sacrifice.  I need to crave something, then choose not to have it, to remind myself of all Christ gave up for us.  This year, I'm going to model my Lent around my body's five senses, so that Lent will make SENSE for me and my love of bodily comforts.


This is my biggest challenge for Lent.  No Screen Time when I have Face Time.  If I am around people, I will be off of electronics.  Unless it's an emergency (like needing directions when I'm lost), I'll check my phone and email only when I'm by myself.  I will look into people's eyes and realize that nobody is less important than the internet.


Ugh, my weakness is pop music.  While I think it does have its time and place (like while working out) I will stop listening to it in the car.  I will listen to Christian music instead.  This is going to be really hard because I don't generally like Christian music. (Please don't revoke my Catholic Card).


It's hard to choose a Lenten sacrifice based on smell, but this one will make my husband happy.  I will empty the cat's litter box.  We've had a cat for two years, and I've never once changed her litter box.  Pregnancy gave me a good excuse, then laziness took over.  


I started Weight Watchers two weeks ago, and I've cheated every single day.  So, for Lent, I will actually count points and do the plan the right way.  For me, that means eating my 26 points each day and then using all my exercise points + extra weekly points between Saturday night and Sunday night.  Eating 26 points a day basically means no sweets, no fried foods, no fun.


This is an easy one...I will hug my husband and kids every day.  I do this anyway and it's not a sacrifice, but more of a reminder to love unconditionally.  I want to intentionally give thanks to God for them while I'm hugging them and tell them I love them.

I'm not writing all this out to boast of my intentions, I just really need the accountability and would love to know what you all are planning for Lent this year.  I think if I can do all these relatively simple things for 40 days, I'm hoping they will add up to some good life improvements and a beautiful Easter that will delight the senses.


  1. Your #1- wow. That would be so hard and so good for me. Maybe I will make that my 'weekend' commitment because honestly I don't think I could do it everyday. Which is kind of sad, but totally true. What a good idea.

  2. If you're not a big fan of Christian music, you can always add classical music as well as music from musicals like Sound of Music, Fiddler on the Roof, Gigi, My Fair Lady, Oklahoma, and you can't forget any Disney movie you know, for the kids. Hakuna matata!

  3. Wow! Those are some great penances and I wish I were brave enough to take some of them on (especially #1 like Mary mentioned--hard but good.) Thanks for the inspiration. :) Also, #2...you are so not alone. Most modern "Christian" music is...bleh and repetitive. And not in the good way like the Rosary. ;) We can hide together if the mob comes for us.

  4. I was going to suggest if you don't like Christian music, listen to Catholic radio? Relevant radio has an app. I love talk radio (or podcasts) as an different option to music. Thanks for the post. Lots to think about!

  5. What a great idea to break it down into senses! I'm totally with you on the mom excuses. I'm always either pregnant or breast feeding so I somehow justify taking it easy. #3 made me laugh!

  6. Wow Girl!! You're going all out. That's awesome. I'm secretly hoping you jump on the Christian Music bandwagon after all this.
    Thanks for the inspiration to really jump in full force.

  7. I love the way you did the different things for every sense. That is insightful. And it's those little things like hugging your kids that make a big difference.

  8. I actually blogged on Christian music daily for Lent 2013. The link is http://grace-filled.net/?cat=46.

  9. #1, I will copy that, if you don't mind. Great post!

  10. Whoa. Now that's a great Lenten list for all five senses. I love it! You go, mama. I'll be praying for you and you pray for me on my Lenten journey which is still yet to be figured out. Yes, I know today is Ash Wednesday. I'm slow moving this year.
    Blessings on your lent!

  11. I saw your post on instagram about the WW lose ten and signed up for the first time ever. This is my first long winter and it's getting to my waistline. So I'm with you on #4...except I have yet to successfully not go over 26 points, so kudos to your lenten resolution! I hope I can do the same :-)

  12. Love the senses connection! I have been doing a 28-day cleanse that my chiropractor recommended and my Lenten resolution is to stick with the eating program (ala Whole 30/Paleo) throughout Lent. It's really made me feel better and I need to stick with it. I'm also a total cheater! So I'm diligently tracking my calories daily and trying my darndest to be honest.

  13. Ah, I love the idea of incorporating your senses! Filing that away for next year...


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