When I was a child it was very difficult to find something to "give up for Lent." I was on a pretty strict diet because of metabolism issues and rarely had sweets anyway. There is not a lot of significance to giving up something you don't get to have on a regular basis.
The emphasis these days is not so much on "giving up" something, but more on doing something positive for these forty days. Presumably, if you practice it for forty days, it may become a positive practice after Easter as well. The emphasis for Lenten practice is on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
While checking the doings of some of my favorite bloggers last evening, I came across some ideas Sr. Susan Roase had found and shared on Musings of a Discerning Woman, and I would like to pass them along here, too.
We are setting out to participate in forty days of fasting from our clutter. In fact, as I sit here blogging, dear hubby has started with gathering the old newpapers to recycle. I will have to check the clutter fast calendar to see if that is the suggestion for the first day, or if he is just on his regular trip to the recycling center. The article gives a scripture reading for each day as well. That may be a good starting off point and a way to connect our stewardship of the earth with scripture. (I fear that it may take all forty days just to declutter my desk, but I will work on other areas, too, and not just the physical space,)
The second fast is a carbon fast . This one originated in the UK. The site has some very serious information about how climate change impacts populations in less developed areas of the world and ways that our actions affect others. This too is stewardship of our earth, and we do want to pass it along to our grandchildren and beyond, don't we?
I'll report back from time to time and let you know how we are doing. What are you doing for Lent this year?