Today, February 25, marks the beginning of Lent. In observance of Ash Wednesday, I have given up a few items to show my repentance, sorrow, and mourning for this Lenten season. I usually give up one food item and one time-consuming activity (and replace it with a more spiritual activity--for discipline). This year is no different--I have given up French Fries and Fan fiction, and yes, I realize the alliteration. I have also thought about abstaining from meat (beef, pork, chicken) and eating fish on Fridays...but that seems a little too Catholic for me. Not that I don't appreciate the various rituals and liturgical value that the Catholic church gives to the Lenten season, but some of it seems rather unnecessary.
I was talking to my co-worker today about how unnecessary some of the practices of the Catholic church are...on the basis that Christ sacrificed himself to make the OLD laws go away and free all of his people from them...instead placing HIMSELF in every one's heart as the NEW law. Extreme Grace. It seems that the Catholic church just couldn't deal with Grace and wanted to implement their own laws. Seeing as if I wanted to be baptized in the Catholic church I would want to know everything about being Catholic and it just ain't in the Bible. There are books and books on the Canons of Law for the Catholic church.
Back to Lent, I am co-leading a new lesson series on Wednesday nights for the youth at my church for Lent and I am a little unsure as to what to talk about without making it too Catholic, frankly. I think I will include a lot of liturgical exercises and introducing some of these kids to some well-needed self-discipline. Very important to devote yourself to the Lord and the Lenten season reminds so many of that. I hope that I am disciplined enough to continue my tasks even after Easter.
BTW, I read the 3rd book in the Trish Perry series that I have been talking about recently and I think it was the best one. It's about the character of Tiffany LeBoeuf, who was saved in the 2nd book, and goes home to nurse her dying mother. In the 3rd book, her mother has died and she has come back home to reclaim the job she put on hold and friends she missed. Her job was unavailable and she is still unsure how to take her new "Christian" friends, who she previously treated like crap. Another friend of the girls, Jeremy, a non-Christian, befriends Tiffany with some hesitation because he remembers how she used to be pre-born again status. They are both attracted to each other, but cannot act on this attraction because (A) Jeremy has a girlfriend, Eve; and (B) Tiffany will not date a non-Christian man.
After a communication mix up, Tiffany ends up sharing a beach house with Jeremy's girlfriend, who is less than accommodating. Jeremy comes over to help sort things out and figures out that his girlfriend is not all she seems. After he breaks things off with Eve, Jeremy and Tiffany form a stronger friendship and eventually fall in love with each other after a Christian neighbor leads Jeremy to Christ. Very good fluffy moments with the couple and its Epilogue is very cute.