Tuesday, February 24, 2009


The season of lent is upon us. So, let's talk about it. What is your passion? Most people do not realize that passion means pain. Literally, it means to be aroused to anger, to suffer. Hence, The Passion of the Christ. He suffered to save us from ourselves, to serve as an example of what it means to be compassionate. A word, which means to suffer along with and to have a desire to help alleviate some of the pain. So, again, I ask, where does your pain reside?
For those of you who are begging the question, and coming to the conclusion that this cannot be true. I would like for you to consider that when you have passion for someone, let's say for instance, in a love relationship, every time you are away from the beloved, you miss him/her. This is a nice way to say that I suffer when I am apart from you. And, what is more interesting is the idea that when you have strong feelings for an individual, when you do come together, something happens to release the "pain". It can be a kiss, a strong embrace and so on and so forth, but we need to have an outlet for our discomfort.
I never truly understood the practice of sacrifice that believers demonstrate during this time before Easter, despite having participated myself. I really thought of it as a religious pursuit that had very little to do with spirituality. And then, I realized that giving up something makes you aware of your pain and how it impairs your ability to function in life. So, this season I have decided to journal about the desires that I will give up for lent. Some of the topics will be the level of difficulty, how much effort/discipline does it take to maintain abstinence? How does this inner/personal struggle affect my ability to communicate, make decisions, tolerate the nuances of being around people? What am I hoping to gain as a result of my sacrifice? Will the outcome of this trial be apparent in my behavior, personality? What conclusions will I come to at the end of this journey?
If you'd like to join me, blog it here. If you wish, confess what you have decided to sacrifice. Give an account of what you are experiencing. Please feel free to share. I am looking for great testimony. Be blessed. And have fun with finding your passion.


  1. I understand totally what you mean Alva, and the definition of the word 'passion' as meaning 'pain' makes perfect sense. The things I am passionate about sometimes literally make me 'ache'. The drive and need to comfort those in pain, for example, sometimes manifests in a strange but tangible feeling of a tugging at my heart. Know what I mean?

    Love - Fatemah

  2. I'm conflicted about this whole Lent thing. I get the potential religious significance of the act of abstaining and feeling pain, but as for the real life applications and importance of Lent, I'm not sold. It feels a little like a New Year's resolution. I can appreciate the self inventory, examining the things we rely on or enjoy and seeing them for what they are, questioning their effects on our life. But I feel that overall this time of year has become very robotic for many, religious or not. I think that many people are abstaining to abstain, to prove they can, without basis for their decisions or real motivation to change. For me, inventory of the things I'd like to lessen in my life is constant, not just yearly. I can't see abstaining just for the sake of it... just to feel some discomfort. Especially if this causes more conflict than indulging. Some of my favorite examples from friends participating in Lent: chocolate, magazines, bubble gum, bowling. The result: people who continued to enjoy and live in harmony with chocolate, magazines, bubble gum and bowling. in general I'd hope people take inventory more than once a year, but at the very least I'd hope that people participating in Lent ARE taking inventory and not just punishing themselves for tradition. I did participate in Lent when I was growing up and was unhappy and ultimately unchanged by this practice. I wonder how many people have had positive and lasting experiences with this experiment...