Lent is here, and with it the inevitable questions: What should I give up? Is it too late to start a spiritual practice now? What would enrich my understanding of Lent, and my living it this year?
We have three ideas that might be helpful:
- Add, rather than subtract. If “giving up” something isn’t working for you, then add something: go to a weekday Mass, choose an enlightening book to read, volunteer at a shelter, spend an hour in Eucharistic Adoration. Adding a practice into your daily life in Lent can help keep you focused.
- Try fasting from one meal a week. If you eliminate something from your life, you’ll feel its absence, and that feeling serves as a reminder of both Our Lord’s journey to the cross as well as the needs of many in our world. Take the money you would have spent on that meal and make a donation.
- Unplug. Giving up social media, even for an hour a day, frees you up for prayer or reading. Listen to silence rather than music or podcasts when you’re driving.
There are as many ways to live Lent as there are people doing it. And you can start living your Lent at any time.