Yeah, you read that right… Rest In Peace Beer! At least for few weeks anyway. As some of you may know, Lent begins tomorrow. Lent is a season in the church calendar that is observed through sacrifice with the intention of preparing ourselves for the celebration of the resurrection day, Easter.
I used to observe Lent every year and even have been responsible for guiding groups of people through the season with writings, studies, activities and devotionals. But I haven’t actively participated in the tradition for the past couple years. Just recently we have started attending an Episcopal church and observance of the church calendar is a central factor in that tradition. So this year Lent has been on my mind a lot. I have been trying to think of something that I could sacrifice that would be meaningful enough for me to feel its absence over the next six weeks or so. I thought about coffee, but for my sanity and the safety of everyone around me I decided against that! 😉 That’s when the thought occurred to me… beer! I really do enjoy beer, but it is also a burden in some ways. If you have ever purchased a beer at a place like Disney California Adventure you will know that the burden lands right smack in the middle of your bank account! And I know beer is at least partly responsible for some of the extra fluffiness I have re-acquired the past few months. So while I will miss beer, a lot… I mean A WHOLE LOT! It will also be chance to re-establish some positive habits and behaviors as well. And that’s not even considering the fewer arguments between my wife and I, that usually happen after she checks our bank account post-Disney visits!
This Lenten season will be tough, but that’s what it’s supposed to be. The intention is to take the focus off of us and what we can accomplish and put the focus on what God can do if we get out of the way. That’s the whole point of the Easter story, isn’t it? Seeing and experiencing God’s power in a new and fresh way! So those times that I am missing my beloved suds, I will instead focus on what God is doing around me and how I might join in that activity.
Now, that being siad, today is Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday. It has traditionally been a day of celebration before we begin the solemn season of Lent. So, tonight when I get done at jiu jitsu practice, I’m going to sit down to a good dinner and enjoy the last Barley Forge Coconut Rye Stout I have in my fridge and have my own little Mardi Gras celebration in preparation for the season ahead! I might even throw some cheap plastic beads at myself, too! 🙂