As a child I grew up with a Catholic mother and a Southern Baptist father, so I tell people I am religiously confused. Do I drink or not? Do I dance or not? These two religions are about as far apart as the North and South poles. I have found that I tend to like certain things about both religions. There are songs, prayers and rituals that bring comfort to me. Though I am more of a practicing Baptist than Catholic, I give up something for Lent each year.
In years past I have given up mostly food items. One year it was drinking sodas. It was tough the first few days because of the caffeine withdrawals but I made it through. That first sip of a soda after 40 days was heaven. Or at least I thought so at the time. Another year I gave up french fries. That was even more difficult because french fries are the most offered side dish for most meals. Then the next year I got more ambitious. I gave up potatoes all together. Stupid, stupid move. 40 DAYS without potatoes. Do you know how many delicious things are made from POTATOES? French fries, baked potatoes, potato salad, hash browns, potato soup, mashed potatoes, potato pancakes...you get the picture. I thought I would die before Easter came that year. I didn't (amazingly) and I lived to tell the tale.
In other years, I've given up on material things like not buying celebrity gossip magazines or shoes. Needless to say, I try to sacrifice something in my life as a small penance for what Jesus did for saving my life. I read earlier in the year that a family of four saved about $10,000 by doing one thing. This year I decided I too am going to do this one thing.
I'm going to give up impulse buying. For the next 40 days (give or take), I will be resisting the urge to buy unnecessary items. I'm going to try to purchase only edibles and depletables (gasoline for my car or shampoo, toothpaste, toilet paper). I will try to use up what I have. Wear it out. Make it do. Or do without. If it's not on the necessary items shopping list, I will have to resist the temptation of buying it. Wish me luck. Are you giving up for Lent? If so, what? I would like to know.