Today, being Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent, is a day many people give up something. My oldest daughter’s youth group at Church talked about it so this year she’s decided to give up chocolate.
Since she’s giving something up I thought I would join her. I wanted to make mine something that wouldn’t be easy… but yet something I could realistically do.
Here’s what I decided. I am going to give up watching television between 9pm and 10pm and use that time to read or accomplish something constructive.
I’m hoping to continue this on past Lent and that it will have become a habit.
Motivation for success will come from knowing my daughter is watching me and wanting to show her the importance of keeping your word. Putting it out there publicly on this blog is another way of holding myself accountable.
And in case I needed one other thing to keep me motivated to not break my Lenten promise… I found this week’s Bible verse.
Ecclesiastes 5:4-5 (NLT)
4 When you make a promise to God, don’t delay in following through, for God takes no pleasure in fools. Keep all the promises you make to him. 5 It is better to say nothing than to make a promise and not keep it.
What about you? Are you giving up anything for Lent?
I’ve been reading The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews so I started to follow him on Twitter.
One of his recent tweets really got me thinking. He asked a simple question: What advice would you give to your younger self?
I could come up with a pretty long list but here is a start:
Take Spanish all 4 years in high school. It’ll save you the time and frustration of having to take some in college.
Spend more time with your Grandparents. They’ll be gone sooner than you think.
While you’re at it have your Grandma show you how to make blackberry jam. Her’s was the best and you’ll never find a store bought kind that even comes close to tasting as good.
Save your Star Wars figures. You can sell them for some serious cash someday.
Practice the piano and don’t stop taking lessons. It’s a skill you can use the rest of your life.
Spend less time looking for a girlfriend and more time making friends. Girlfriends come and go but real friends won’t.
Try wearing contacts. You’ll like them. That way you won’t want to kick yourself when you eventually do at age 40.
Take risks. Take chances. It’s OK to fail at something as long as you try and you learn something from it.
When you’re at Church camp and you go on a night hike be sure and bring a flashlight. It will help you avoid stepping in a latrine.
Start saving money early. Make it a habit. You’ll thank me on this one later.
Those are just a few of my initial thoughts. I’m still thinking about the question a day after I read it.
So what about you? What advice would you give to your younger self?
I’ve already shared what I believe to be my best parenting tip… cooking with your kids. Cook with them enough times and they’ll start to get good and gain confidence. That’s when you’ll be rewarded for your efforts.
Yesterday, the weather in our area wasn’t the greatest. My wife had the day off, Church was cancelled, and we found ourselves with the opportunity for a lazy family Sunday.
While the rest of the family stayed in bed and got a good start on being lazy our oldest, age 12, took it upon herself to make the family breakfast. A real breakfast too. Pancakes, eggs, and sausage! It was a great start to the day.
The food looked and tasted wonderful. That wasn’t the best part, though. The best part was seeing the pride my daughter took in her accomplishment. She knew she had made everything all by herself without any input from Mom and Dad and it made her feel good about herself.
It also boosted her confidence in the kitchen. Can’t wait to see what she makes for the family next.
What’s the first meal your children made all by themselves?