Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lewis and Lent

I just love C.S. Lewis. His words are like little lightbulbs that illuminate the mind. This morning I was looking for some reassuring words of wisdom from Mr. Lewis about Lent, and he didn't fail me.

He writes in Mere Christianity:

No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good. A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is ... A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later.

"A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later." I LOVE this! There go those lightbulbs.

Each year I try to give something up for Lent. It's always easier to give something up during this holiest time of year. It seems like the least I can do as an act of gratitude and submission to God. This year I'm giving up curse words, an ugly little habit I picked up while working long, frustrating hours in a newsroom after college. For some reason, only four-letter words can make you feel SO good when you've slammed your finger in a drawer or been cut off in traffic. However, they aren't very appropriate when little ears are around. It's a hard habit to shake and one I haven't really wanted to until now. But the other day when I was out and about, I heard a woman use some of my favorite four-letter words at the grocery store when she was talking to her friend, and I thought, "Do I sound like that??" I was mortified. I don't want my children to remember me like that, "She was a good mom, but she could cuss like a sailor at times.." So here goes...

I'm also giving up workout rest days. My workouts keep me grounded and happy and at peace with the world. And I'll need that if I can't cuss any longer. :-)

It will be a sacrifice. I have a feeling I'll be reminding myself often of Mr. Lewis' sage words. But mostly, I'll be thinking of the amazing sacrifice that was made for me many years ago on a cross in Jerusalem.

Happy Lent, everyone!!

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