So technically, I don't really participate in lent (I'm not a Catholic), but I like the idea of giving something up for an extended period of time for the sake of Christ and my relationship with Him, that it may grow and flourish.
A few days ago I made a post about giving up television/movies for a month, which you can read about here.
Typically, for lent, it's a 40-day period of time which runs from tomorrow (Wednesday the 9th) until around Easter, and is done as a remembrance of Christ and His death on the cross for us (AKA He made a sacrifice for us, so lent is us making a sacrifice for Him).
After talking with some people and thinking about it, I've decided that I'm going to give up television/movies until then, as well as limiting my Facebook (such an addictive habit!) time to only once a week on Friday's for around two hours max.
On top of that, there is also the idea of ADDING something, rather than taking away, so while I'm taking away these things, I'm going to add 40 days of prayer.
I was actually presented with this idea last year around lent, but never actually followed through unfortunately. I still have the sheet and since I can't seem to find a link to it on the internet, I will write the days and such below for you to check out and possibly do as well! :)
I actually really love giving up certain things - it is unbelievably freeing! It can be such an awesome way to deepen your walk with Christ! :) Several months ago, I gave up Facebook for an entire week and IT WAS AMAZING. I had so much more free time and I felt so free from the constant habit of having to go on. I really encourage you to try it out and see for yourself. :) You won't know until you try though, so I encourage you to think about it and see if maybe there is something that is possibly taking up a little too much time in your schedule, and cutting down if not cutting it out completely for a time. If you happen to decide on adding or cutting something out, let me know! I would love to hear about it. :) Also, I do have other friends doing these with me, so that is going to be a big and encouraging help. If you do decide on something, it would probably be highly beneficial to ask around and find someone(s) that is interested in doing it with you! Not only can you encourage each other, but also keep each other accountable. :)
If you are interested in doing the 40 Days of Prayer, here is the list for it!
40 Days of Prayer:
Day 1. Share with God why you wanted to do this, ask Him what He wants to show you during this time.
Day 2. Praise God for making you His own, ask him how to better live in a manner worthy of His Name.
Day 3. Praise God for his faithfulness, ask him to show you how to be faithful like he is.
Day 4. Praise God for His love, ask him how you can possess Christ-like love.
Day 5. Praise God for His understanding and patience with you, ask him to soften your heart towards others.
Day 6. Praise God for knowing you completely, ask to know Him better.
Day 7. Praise God for his justice, ask that you might accept his sovereignty in all things.
Day 8. Praise God for his grace and compassion to save, remember all that Jesus washed away.
Day 9. Praise God for his forgiveness, ask for strength to forgive others without holding on.
Day 10. Praise God for the gifts he has given, ask how best to use them at this time.
Day 11. Praise God for his protection, dwell on what he has given you to protect.
Day 12. Prasie God for laughter and joy, consider all He has given you.
Day 13. Praise God for giving you opportunity to serve him, ask how you can more where you are.
Day 14. Praise God for our hope and blessed assurance, ask him to remind you daily of that hope.
Day 15. Focus on your family, start with your parents
Day 16. Respect and honor, where do these fit in your relationship with your family and with God.
Day 17. Pray for any unsaved family members.
Day 18. How do others observe your relationship with Christ, is your family involved in your walk?
Day 19. Pick a family member you would like to grow closer with, pray for them.
Day 20. Pray over another family member and then another, be specific - dig deep.
Day 21. You are a son, daughter, brother or a sister... how can you better contribute to your family?
Day 22. What have you been holding onto that needs to be let go.. so you can let God?
Day 23. Past sins can fester, time to repent. (Try Gods standard of purity, forget about your own).
Day 24. Habits are hard to break, habitual sins distance us from God.. they stunt our growth.
Day 25. Are you generous the way God is generous, is there something you covet?
Day 26. Do you find at times you judge others? Don't. It's not your place.
Day 27. Does your standard mirror God's?
Day 28. Do you hate sin? Do you want to? Pray for a Godly hatred for the things God hates.
Day 29. Ministry time, how have you made yourself available to God?
Day 30. Do you have a mentor? Pray for Godly mentors in your life, Praise God for those who have mentored you.
Day 31. Consider you church, are you doing your part to contribute to the body of Christ?
Day 32. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, all that you have is not yours but His.
Day 33. Are there any needs you could fill in your home church? Is there something holding you back?
Day 34. Are there any biblical concepts you are unclear on? Pray for motivation to pursue understanding.
Day 35. Do you have anyone you are mentoring, or keeping accountable? If so, pray for them. If not, why not?
Day 36. Praise God for the blessing of His Word, praise Him for this time of prayer.
Day 37. Search your heart; express your love for God.
Day 38. Think of your favorite praise song or hymn, reflect on the lyrics.
Day 39. Explore your dreams and desires, are they Christ centered?
Day 40. Today this part of your journey is complete, pray for what God has next in store for you. Trust Him.