Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Bethany Bible College: Experiencing Lent

Growing up when I did in an evangelical church I did not know about lent. or at least any more then it was something that  Roman Catholics did. Where i lived there was a large population of Roman Catholics so we always saw them with crosses on their foreheads on Ash Wednesday. And the whole thing seemed silly. they would talk bout giving up swearing for lent, or alcohol. I heard about people giving up sex. What I understood by listening to the Roman Catholics I went to school with was that lent was a time to pretend to be virtuous. A time when they would give up something that was sinful for these forty days then after Easter they would go back to the way they had always been.

While I was at Bethany Bible College I learned that instead lent wasn't about giving up sin for a time, but about giving up something that was good and enjoyable to remember that Jesus suffered for us. evenfarther from that my understanding of lent has evolved to remember why we celebrate lent. a time to think about what the world would be like if Christ had not come and died. Beside giving something up I also like to have a reading list of different atheist philosophers, the abolition of man, and the Screwtype Letters. Some to help me remember why we needed a savior and how to grow in him. I have also read the Divine Comedy (just the first part) during lent before.

Also now I believe that if we give something up you should replace it with some extra act of virtue. So the money that we save by giving up something like soda give to the poor, if it is a meal or something equivalent take that time to pray extra. something that will help you grow not just by fasting but also by giving ourselves to the poor and our brothers and sisters in Christ.

looking back the celebrating of lent is something that was a push towards having more practices of antiquity in my practice of my faith. I am glad that there are many main stream churches who are re-incorporating lent into their practices.

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