small pieces of joy

pieces of joy in each day


Today’s small thing: making a plan for lent

Hey, it’s Ash Wednesday…boo!

That’s kind of how I felt today as lent creeped up on me and knocked me out of bed.

The problem I have with lent is that it is perceived as a horrible time of self-sacrifice and denial. A time of not eating your beloved steak and instead eating a basket of fish and chips (it’s rough). A time of feeling bad about yourself waiting for the banquet of Easter. A time of guilt and sadness.

Lent is so much more than that. It’s a time of reflection. A time of change. A time, set apart each year, to identify what is going on in your life and actually take steps to move in a positive direction. A time to work on yourself and your relationship with God.

It is too too easy to spend life not knowing what you’re doing, where you’re going, and how others around you are affected. I have the curse of ALWAYS thinking about those things yet never doing anything about them.

That is why I love Lent. Not because I like to remind myself of what I do wrong, but because I can remind myself of what I CAN do RIGHT. And then take active steps to change. To return to the path I want to walk, and to bring God along with me.

So today I spent some time making a list of the things in my life I want to change. Anything I want to change. From keeping my house clean, to daily prayer, to drinking 64oz of water a day kind of things. Then I decided which ONE I wanted to focus on this lent and made a daily plan to work on that.

I’ve decided I want to work on keeping my house clean. I’ve mentioned it before but I’m determined to make the sacrifices I need to make to create a stress-free home, during this time of action. I think I’m going to make myself get up at the same time each morning (talk about a LOFTY goal) and throughout the day focus on my daily cleaning plan. I made a plan similar to this before, but it failed miserably. Here is my new plan.


My hope is that as I complete one of the tasks I will check it off and feel a sense of accomplishment. Who knows, this could fail just like the last one. But I’m trying, and that is the point, right?

I’m also going to set an alarm on my phone to remind me to pray each day, in addition to my alarm that reminds me to do some kind of workout during nap time. Oh the many alarms I will be answering in the near future…

It may seem silly to focus on this, when lent is a time to bring yourself back to God. But for me, right now, taking care of my home and my sanity are ways I can order my life back to God. I can make room for Him by making this change. Instead of worrying about my messy house all the time, I can maybe sit for a few minutes and talk to Him.

I just wanted to share these things because I love hearing what people are doing to better their lives and relieve stress (read–tell me what you’re doing!). I hope others feel the same. Remember, Lent is not a terrible horrible time. It’s an opportunity for greatness.

What is your plan?