Hello, Guys, this is Roxanne Wilkening, and welcome to Shedding the Weight… it’s been a couple of weeks since we last talked.
I know the importance of being consistent but I have been stuck. I have several topics, but for some reason, I haven’t been able to get them out of my head and onto paper.
Since I took a snow today I thought I would tell you about Lent which starts tomorrow. But let’s talk about the significance of today.
Today is Mardi Gras which means
“Fat Tuesday” in French. Fat Tuesday is the last night of eating rich, fatty foods before the Lent season begins. This tradition has made New Orleans famous. During non-Covid times people would flock to New Orleans for parties, parades, and throwing of the beads. The next day is Ash Wednesday which starts Lent.
Lent is a spiritual holiday practiced by Orthodox Christians, Catholics, and some Protestants. It’s fasting, praying, and reconciling with the Lord for 40 days. The traditional time frame begins on Ash Wednesday (tomorrow) and continues to the last Friday before Easter.
Easter is a “movable feast” and does not have a fixed date. However, it is always held on a Sunday between March 22 and April 2. Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the full Moon that occurs on or just after the spring equinox. The Lent season is determined by counting back forty days from Easter.
I don’t practice either of the three traditional faiths that commemorate Lent but I have practiced Lent for years. Since I consider myself more spiritual rather than religious I tend to follow many practices of many faiths that resonate with me.
For me, this time is about sacrificing and making a deeper connection to God. I have given up many things throughout the years.
- Coke – Cola
- Negative talk
- Not eating past 7:00
- To name a few
Last year I felt that my life lacked a consistent bible study time so my commitment was to do a bible study every day for 40 days. Let me back up. First I don’t arbitrarily pick things. I pray and think about it for weeks leading up to Lent. It needs to be a true sacrifice and something that will bring me closer to God and make me a better person.
With my current spiritual journey, I don’t feel the need to go to a building every Sunday but rather practice my spiritual walk every day. Without a ritual Sunday practice, I began to feel like my life lacked spiritual structure so last year I decided to start doing a bible study for Lent.
Since I combine my Lent season with prayer and meditation my bible study time did not stop at Easter. I have continued to do bible study each morning since last year. Not all things have become a lifetime practice but in one way or another, bits and pieces of those sacrifices have added value to my life in some way.
This wonderful habit of bible study has been a gift that keeps on giving. The Bible study practice has led me on a wonderful journey. Either it has opened new doors or brought clarity to my thoughts.
If you want to Shed some Weight I encourage you to try practicing Lent or a 40-day journey. Here are things I consider when I’m deciding what to sacrifice.
My sacrifice is a :
- Time of fasting and abstaining
- Focus on my spiritual connection
- Incorporate devotional time
- and personal examination and reflection
This year I plan on eliminating eating out and start taking vitamins regularly. I hope taking vitamins becomes a lifelong practice. I can assure you, I will not be eliminating eating out for good, but I hope these 40 days will provide accountability and awareness on eating and spending.
Remember this is a very personal time so chose what’s best for you and the thing that will bring you closer to your dreams. I caution you on sharing what you will sacrifice with everyone. Some people will help you on your journey and others may harm you. So share sparingly.
Here’s your challenge for the week: BTW it doesn’t have to be tied to a spiritual cause it could be for self-awareness. Here are some tips for your challenge:
- Chose a timeframe to fast (day, week, or 40 days)
- Chose something to give up or habit to practice – not so hard that you give up but not so easy it lacks a challenge.
- Track your progress
- Journal your experience
- Celebrate your success.
This practice has helped me “Shed the Weight” and grow into my authentic self.