Over the years I’ve heard of people giving up a variety of things for Lent. People have attempted to forgo chocolate, Facebook, drinking, drying their hair and bad language, among many other things.
Now that the 40 days of Lent are halfway through, I checked in with some of my coworkers to see how their experiences were going:
Maxine (Sales and Marketing Assistant)
Books are a terrible weakness of mine—which makes perfect sense seeing as I work for a publishing company. So, this year I decided to give up buying books: no hardcovers, paperbacks, used books or ebooks. I wanted to see if I could read the books I already had, instead of going out and chasing down the newest bestseller, and to practice patience, restraint and self-control. It’s been tough so far, and I’ve already faltered once (without even realizing it, I bought a favorite author’s latest ebook). But even so, I’m still trying to not buy anything new and to read through the pile of books I already own.
Glenn (Associate Publisher)
A check of my Lenten devotions is, at least for me, something quite personal. When people ask me what I gave up or what I am doing for Lent, I remember Matthew’s Gospel—”What is done in secret…”—so all I can say is that I have found this Lent as challenging as ever, that I have kept my promises and that keeping them gives me the boost I need to expect Easter with joy. I hope that bad habits will remain in the past and new efforts at living a better life will stick with me. That would be a great Easter gift indeed.
Maria (National Sales Manager–Books and Resources)
This year I took a bit of different approach to Lent. Instead of giving something up, every day I say an extra prayer and pray for someone who might need extra prayers or for those who have asked for prayers. Holy week is a time for reflecting and sharing, and I celebrate it by going to church, praying, giving and by sharing the time with family, neighbors and friends.
As for myself, this year I gave up white sugar. The hardest part was at the very beginning of Lent, when at about 3pm every day I’d long to reach for that chocolate bar, cookie or danish, but instead I had to snack on fruit, nuts or pretzels. The funny thing was that the longer I went without sugar the more I realized that I didn’t need it, and the more I appreciated the variety of other things I could eat. This experience has helped me to remember that the things that I think I “need” are not essential to my happiness; there are many comforts and luxuries that I can do without.