Creative Writing: Giving up Sweets for Lent

I gave up sweets for Lent this year.

When I was a kid, dessert was a “no-no” during Lent–it’s just the thing you did “for Jesus.” As I grew up, though, and built my own relationship with Jesus, I started to wonder whether Lent was a good thing. I mean, what was the point of giving up something for Jesus? Did it earn me bonus points? Since He gave it all up for me, wasn’t it kind of hypocrite to try to add to my salvation? So I gave up on Lent altogether; it felt too religious to me.

As I grew up, though, and continued to build my own relationship with Jesus, I wondered whether I might have missed something about the whole Lent-thing. It might not be a bad idea, after all, to choose to deny the flesh for forty days, use that time to reflect on His sacrifice, like a kind of a fast. It couldn’t hurt.

So I gave up sweets for Lent this year. it did not feel religious at all.

It truly was a mindset. I thought about sweets every day, right around three pm, that time where a little something sweet would have tasted so good with my afternoon cup of coffee. But I stuck to my plan until Easter dinner when we had carrot cake for dessert.

Carrot cake is my favorite.

I thought about the taste of carrot cake for the last couple of days before Easter. It was going to be yummy.

Easter came around, and someone served me a generous piece of carrot cake with cream cheese icing. I took one bite, and it tasted oh-so-sweet. I had forgotten what sweet feels like. The delight of sweet exploded in my mouth and then filled my belly.

Did I tell you that carrot cake is my favorite?

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And just as sweet as the carrot cake felt when it entered my mouth after forty days of no sweetness, that is as sweet as my redemption feels to Him after giving up His very life for me.

I am that sweet to Him.

And all of a sudden, I understood the meaning of Lent. And my joy was made full.

I believe in the power of Lent.

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