Ash Wednesday and Lent are now upon us. I’ve always encountered some internal struggle when this season of the church year comes calling. It is common practice for Christians to give something up for Lent – to fast from that which might be detracting from a walk with the Lord. Though many things to distract in my life, I am always at a loss as to what I might give up for Lent. I may even begin to feel guilty that I can’t identify that one thing that should be given up. In the end, I give up nothing.

I fault no one for the ‘giving up’ of something during Lent. I appreciate the tradition and recognize its value. However, it seems I often take a different gait as we journey through Lent.

I think, at the core, we all aim to give up so that we may take up. In giving up and in surrender, we find that we may then daily take up the cross of Jesus.

Lord, as we enter this Lenten season, remind me of my humanity and mortality. We are here on this earth for a fleeting moment in time. May we turn to you and devote these days to the lifting of Your name in our midst and among all nations. Amen.