“What did you give up for Lent?”
Those of us who observe the discipline of the 40 day journey from Ash Wednesday to Good Friday and Easter Sunday are asked this question about as often as we hear “Are you ready for Christmas?”
It’s not a rhetorical question. Folks really want to know.
Lent is so much more than “giving up something”, but okay, we can talk about that. It’s a tenet of the 12-step program that one should replace the habit that is abandoned with positive behavior. It is also scriptural (Luke 11:26). Giving up a time waster? Read a good book. Leaving off chocolate? Eat a salad.
When we compare the small sacrifice we make to what Jesus has done for us, it seems ludicrous.
He gave his life — Can I spare an hour? He fasted to the point of near death — Can I do without dessert? He has taken care of me for 85 years — Can I donate to the Little Free Pantry?
It’s not about what I “give up”, it’s about Him and His sacrifice.
“Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe.
Sin had left a crimson stain.
He washed it white as snow.”