Lent 2017: Couch Potato Starts Making Changes for God!

Lent :Day 1 of 40

Name: Leslie An
Lenten Commitment: Do physical activity five days per week and do bible study every other day

img_20170225_2I’ve been trying to get myself pumped up for Lent for a while now, from little Lent reminders scribbled throughout my planner to my constant envisioning of how I will have changed when the season of Lent is over. So what kind of person do I hope to become by the end of Lent? A more physically and mentally healthy person. … Easier said than done.

But yes, I truly think that I can change for the better from Lent. In a way, I’ve already initiated the Lenten process. As a devoted couch potato, I knew that I would need to begin exercising ASAP in order to accomplish any physical activity throughout Lent. So, I started following along with pilates workout Youtube videos in my room, despite my brother walking in occasionally and laughing at me (*cri*). I also thought it’d be a good idea to ride my bike as a form of physical activity, so, after years of never getting on a bike, I spent a day getting comfortable with mine. In fact, I was so bad at riding my bike that Tristan had to teach me how to get on my bike without freaking out, and it took me a while to realize that pressing the right-hand brake is preferable to accelerating insanely down a steep hill and crying out to Thomas for help. Now, biking is my new hobby. If I’m already discovering new things about myself–like how I actually like riding my bike–then I can’t imagine all of the amazing things I will realize about myself, others, and God if I commit to my goals for Lent.

My advice for you is to have specific commitments for Lent. I think that specificity is the best way to achieve broader goals; my broader goal is to be a more physically and mentally healthy person, so I chose to do physical activity and bible study for Lent. I encourage all of you to write down a big goal that you have, and then to write all of the specific things you can do to attain it.

You can choose almost anything to be your big goal. I had always thought that Lent was about giving something up in order to become closer to God, but I recently learned that Lent is also actually about disciplining yourself in preparation for Jesus’ death on Good Friday and His resurrection on Easter Sunday. I believe that this discipline resembles Jesus’ persecution and that the change which will occur within us is akin to Jesus’ resurrection. If you think about it, Lent occurs from March 1st all the way up until the day before Jesus died. It’s inevitable that I will face tribulation as I try to fulfill my Lenten commitment so it’ll be comforting to think of Jesus, who suffered throughout these same days, thousands of years ago. Likewise, I hope that I will become closer to the person Jesus wants me to be, just as He became the person He was meant to be by resurrecting.

I hope that all of us can achieve our big goals together, notwithstanding the communal struggle that is to come. I also hope that we won’t forget how the discipline entailed in Lent impacts our relationships with God, and that the temporary pain isn’t for nothing. I think that my brothers and sisters in DSYG can really experience Lent transformatively; perhaps couch potatoes can become active potatoes, doubters can become believers, social media addicts can become real life enthusiasts, and DSYG can become an ambitious DSYG that lives out loud the Gospel.

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