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Lent and going without.

by on March 4th, 2014
Lent and going without. Cover Image

The beginning of Lent is near, and those who participate in this ritual of going without are preparing to give up something that is meaningful in some way. I know many people are inspired by this event; Christians and those holding other beliefs use this time to remind themselves of those who have less, to inspire deeper thought about possessions and luxuries and what things are important, and to offer up penitence in some way. I grew up in a Catholic home, and participated in Lent for many years…I believe I usually gave up chocolate or allowance, some very tangible thing that made a small impact in my life.

While the things that people choose to give up vary widely, I suspect that for a number of people it will be caffeine and/or coffee. It may seem trivial, but going without this chemical can have many effects; many are so used to having it in regular quantities every day, and to suddenly stop can bring on withdrawal symptoms, general crankiness, and maybe even a feeling of sadness at not having that ‘cup of comfort.’ It may or may not go deeper than that in terms of what going without might teach you, but I’m not here to judge. I’m here to offer a dispensation, of sorts…

Coffee With Jesus is a nice little compilation of the online comic of the same name. A little humor, a little iconic art, and more than a little thought go into each strip. It avoids heavy lessons in favor of quick but lingering suggestions…hey, think about this a bit. Reflect. And yes, Jesus is a main character here, but he is quite modern in view while at the same time being the old-school, accepting of everyone kind of guy. There’s no offense meant here, whatever your belief (or non-belief, in fact) is. And this little book just might help you find a different jolt of energy and comfort for the time being.

One Response to “Lent and going without.”

  1. Anne says:

    I just read in the book The Year 1000, by Robert Lacey and Danny Danzinger, that the tradition of giving up something for Lent started with the need to fast during the early spring, because the stores from the last harvest were empty. The practice was pre-Christian, in England at least, but I’m sure this was a problem that extended beyond that isle. As interesting as how traditions and rituals are started, knowing this makes some of my own Lenten sacrifices feel less trivial, because, like you, they were also food related. Plus, chocolate is actually a good one because there is a shortage with growing demand. And we should all cut back on sugar, as the new food labels will point out to us.

    Anyways, great post.

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