It’s that season again…Lent. I think some of us dread this time where we are asked to refocus our attention and either give up or start a new Christian practice. I’ve done the traditional giving up chocolate, or fried food, or even Facebook and they did help me to refocus, but this year I signed up for the text alerts from Rethink Church. Each Sunday, they send out a question to focus on and ponder for the week.
On Ash Wednesday, I received the first, asking “What are the basic needs in my community?” Interesting… I thought about the basic needs and how many go unmet. I am so blessed to wake up every day and not have to worry about my basic needs being met. I laugh often with my fiancé about the difference between wants and needs. I think that’s the point of Lenten disciplines; it’s time to sort out the difference between your needs and wants.
I’ve been interviewing at graduate schools the past few weeks, and their first question is always, ‘Why are you pursuing graduate studies?’ After being asked this question over and over, I decided that my Lenten discipline was going to be asking, ‘Why?’.
Why do I want x? Why do I do y? Why am I so focused on x and y?
While I try to refocus and sort out my wants and needs, I need to ask these questions. I need to get back to the source, and I need to remember whose I am.
Sunday morning, we sang the doxology that most of you probably know by heart:
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
I don’t think I’ve ever listened closely enough to that. All blessings flow from God; it’s an idea so simple that I sometimes miss it.
Why do I praise God? Because the blessings given to me by God are more than I could ever earn.