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Lent: A Season of Prayer by: Abbey Pardue

This year, with Lent beginning on Valentine’s Day and occurring during a leap year, I am excited to see what new opportunities and experiences are in store.

Lent began as an Early Christian ritual that came about so people could fast and prepare their hearts and minds for Easter. As demonstrated in the Bible, fasting is an important practice for believers to humble themselves before the Lord and grow in true intimacy with him, as illustrated by David in Psalm 35:13. In scripture, a primary form of fasting is an eating fast. However, consumption of food is not the only common practice that could be the subject of abstinence. Sometimes God calls certain people to give up different things for certain reasons. I believe we should fast from anything that distracts us from our relationships with God, others, and even ourselves. 

Fasting can be something as small as refusing to hit the “snooze” button on your alarm for the next week, or as big as completely putting away your phone for all 40 days of Lent. Something important to note is a week of fasting can help someone learn moderation and strengthen their relationships, but in other cases, fasting can open our eyes to things we need to get rid of in our lives in order to move forward and grow spiritually.

In 2023, I took a 40 day fast from social media. That time was beneficial in helping me be more present and aware, as well as have higher self-esteem and a smaller desire to sit and scroll for hours. After Lent, I redownloaded my social media apps and realized none of it seemed as important anymore. I never felt out of the loop or that I was needing to perform in a certain way. What did Lent do for me? It helped me refocus on things that matter. 

While many protestant Christians do not practice Lent, I believe everyone can benefit from the practice of fasting. This season is a great opportunity to let go of things that are stealing your time and refocus on the presence of God all around you. What is something you are feeling called to give up this Easter season? What things are hindering you from stepping into your full potential in Christ?


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