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Give Up Every Day

I am an Evangelical Christian. I am not Catholic. I do not participate in the practice of 40 days of Lent giving something up. I don’t understand this practice. Why does Lent have to be the time that you give something up? Why can’t it be September? Shouldn’t as practicing Christians we be trying to give up the ‘bad’ things in our lives year round?

I remember when I gave up smoking. It was because of a girl. Nine months later, the girl and I were broken up and I started chewing tobacco. I gave that up some six years later when my wife was pregnant with my son. I have battled with those urges ever since and have I been 100% without them? No. I enjoy an occasional sweet cigar especially while playing golf. Last year I tried a shredded beef jerky that looked like chewing tobacco. It was nasty.

We all have vices. We all either drink too much soda, eat too much candy, or have something that you could do without. I admire the people that try to give something up. But does it matter what time of year it is? I get the sacrifice of trying something like Jesus’s trials and his 40 days of desolation. Isn’t this something a Christian should practice every day? Aren’t we all trying to be more Christlike?

I suck at giving things up. I know this. Do you know why? I am a human. I am not perfect. I want to be more Christlike. I want to be able to avoid all the evils in this world but it is hard. I have a wife that supports me but she is human too.

I try every day to give things up. I want to be a better person. Shouldn’t we all try to be a better person? I mean every day. Not just during the 40 days of Lent.

One comment on “Give Up Every Day

  1. Hey, Jeff. I totally agree that we should seek to follow closely after Jesus every day of our lives. I totally see this in you, as a man who seeks to follow him with heart, soul, mind and strength.

    Let me tell you why I believe in practicing some type of “fasting” from time to time during the year. It really doesn’t matter what time of year you do it. Jesus said, “when you fast.” in Matthew 6:16. He assumed we would fast from time to time. Jesus also said, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Mt. 16:24).

    You can fast from anything, like television, desserts, fast food, Facebook. You can fast from anything that might be taken time away from your relationship with God. When you fast, you think of Jesus, and how much he gave up for you. You also acknowledge that Jesus is the bread of life, and he is the one who really satisfies us. All the things of the world cannot satisfy like Jesus.

    The reason I fast during Lent is that it is a time when I can gain encouragement from other Christians. When we participate in these disciplines together, it helps us to follow through and brings greater joy.

    Thanks for being honest and putting your thoughts out there. You are a gifted writer and I have enjoyed reading many of your blogs.

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