Ohhh, let’s Lent again, like we did last Easter

Is this thing on?

Don’t you just hate awkward mic checks?

“Say something. Anything.”

“Test 1 2 3”

“Anything but that.”

Rent

Going to try this blog thing again. Might be a little rusty.

Folks, it is Lent again, and I love Lent. Someone on Facebook announced she was going to practice some sort of discipline during Lent for the first time, and I felt compelled to tell her all the ways I have observed it. My list of suggestions was rather long. I felt like I an expert or something. Dang, I love Lent. It’s like New Year’s all over for those who swing and miss on their failed resolution. At least there’s Lent. I might not have much self discipline to practice a New Year’s resolution, but I am disciplined at Lent because I can do it for Jesus.

That reminds me of a story I heard once, even though it’s not about Lent. A mother was in her son’s principal’s office, learning how her son, though bright and doing well on graded assignments and tests, was failing because he wasn’t doing his homework. Mom, being a devout Christian and fired up about her son’s bad attitude proclaimed to him, “if Jesus can get up there and die on the cross, then my son can do his $#%&$% homework!”  That is exactly why I am able to adopt discipline during Lent, but seriously, I ought to try a little harder the other 45.5 weeks of the year.

This year I thought I would be cool and give up Facebook for Lent.  I’ve been feeling a wee bit addicted to it, yet also annoyed with it.  Facebook to me had become like Cady Heron’s description of Regina George in Mean Girls:

“I was a woman possessed. I spent about 80% of my time talking about Regina, and the other 20% of the time, I was praying for someone else to bring her up so I could talk about her more. I could hear people getting bored with me, but I couldn’t stop. It just kept coming up like word vomit.”

Only my version was,

“Did you see on Facebook that so-and-so did such-and-such? Did you see ____ on Facebook? On Facebook I saw _____. Facebook, Facebook, Facebook!!”

I made that decision to drop it for Lent, only to find out in the days leading up to Lent that seemingly EVERYONE was giving up Facebook, with varying lengths of announcements about it, succinct to extended play length statuses.

“See you after Easter!”

“I will not be on here for a while. I am giving up Facebook for Lent.  If you need me I’m on email.”

“You guysssss I’ve given it a lot of thought and I’ve decided to give up Facebook for Lent!!!! OMG  I am going to miss you guys soo soo much! If you don’t have my email address or cell phone number, please please please let me know now because I won’t be checking messages on here, either! If anyone has a baby or announces they’re pregnant, please text me!!! If anyone gets engaged, please text me!!!! “

I felt so unoriginal!  I still gave up Facebook though.  My rationale was, I think, pretty thoughtful.  It probably annoyed some people, both the way I made my announcement as well as forcing people to email me or text me rather than message me on Facebook.  I didn’t think about blogging about it in time to be able to copy my status here on this post, but the idea about why I gave up Facebook is this (paraphrasing from what I remember from my status):

Jesus, after his baptism, left the community of his disciples and went away into the desert. Likewise, I am leaving this community during Lent to discern my next mission from the standpoint of being in the wilderness. Or getting more time to myself.

It’s been a good experience to not feel compelled to open this app on my phone or open the website on my computer.  There are still plenty of distractions online though, so I sort of feel like I wasn’t entirely faithful to the plan.  However, it has been interesting to feel separated from the online community this way.  I think when I return, at least I hope when I return, I won’t feel so sucked in.  I also think I’ll be able to read it with a more discerning eye.  I won’t be as easily drawn in to navel-gazing posts, displays of passive aggression, minute-by-minute accounts of the day, etc. I think I may even follow the practice of someone else I know who only checks Facebook on the weekends. We’ll see.

The other reason I gave up something virtual rather than actual is because of being a mom now.  Our baby is rapidly approaching the 1 year mark (HOW???) and I wanted to observe Lent but not over-commit myself during a time when I’m already so stretched thin. Even though I would have loved to have taken on something physical, like fasting or reading or something else to incorporate into my day, dropping something seemed more appropriate this year.

I know those post-Easter statuses from my friends who spent Lent sans Facebook will be just as funny, shallow, dramatic, and clever as the Fat Tuesday Facebook adieus were. But I’ll probably wait a while to scroll through and read them.  Because if Jesus can get up there and die on that cross, I can certainly control myself when it comes to my Facebook addiction, and more!

Obligatory cute baby picture before I go. It’s a few months old, but it’s been a while since I posted.  He’s a boy on the move now, has 6 teeth, eats solids, is a total chatterbox, flirt, and sweetheart.  He’s a delightful child, quick to smile and laugh. We’re completely smitten!

Image

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