I made some rather scrumptious pancakes last night even though I say so myself, I tossed one quite high much to the amusement of the recipient. Pancake Day or Shrove Tuesday is of course the chance to feast and party before the beginning of the 40 days of Lent commences on Ash Wednesday. It is observed all over the world whether it be street parties in Trinidad, Cajun Mardi Gras or dancing with the devil in Bolivia. A time, (supposedly) when we 'give up' something that perhaps for the rest of the year we indulge in. A period in which to nurture your spiritual growth.
I tentatively asked a selection of people what they would be personally foregoing for 40 days. 'Nothing' they replied, 'what is the point'? 'Chocolate perhaps' I suggested. This was met with an indignant stare. 'What are you going without' they pointedly asked. I thought about this one quite carefully. 'Nothing' I replied as I thought back to times in the past when frankly my family and I had gone without more than most, things perhaps that people I know take purely for granted and I became secretly rather agitated. And there again there were times when we had had more than most so mine is a personal dilemma between abstaining for all the right reasons rather than because I am told to or feel I should.
I realised too that I was rather 'hazy' about Lent in general, too caught up in my own life and immediate surroundings to stop and ponder so I poked around a little on the Internet and found it was seething with conflict and drowning in a babble of nasty self opinionated voices by people seeking cheap publicity by denouncing other people's beliefs. There were also countless suggestions of what you could go without, but my favourite, and the one I am going to try and achieve is to give rather than go without something that is only beneficial to me.
I got through Day 1 easily, just another 39 to go then..... This will take both time and thought and won't be without a little effort which is what the point of the entire exercise is I guess.
Have faith in yourself and your abilities, take hold of the controls, steer your own course and be the master of the road ahead. Once you do this you will give to others without even realising it.
So far so good......