Breaking Lenten Promises

This Lent I promised to blog daily here and not to edit any pictures I post on any site. I wrote a whole post about my Lenten promise, you can click here to go read it. It has turned out to be a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. I didn’t think I was picking something easy, but I did think that it was something I would be able to do. I guess everyone thinks that at the beginning of Lent. Now we are a little over half way through Lent, in the turmoil of temptation, and I am here to report my journey so far.

I haven’t edited or filtered any pictures this Lent. I haven’t edited by accident, but I have definitely been tempted to edit. I went to a dance last month, and I would really like to edit the pictures of all of my friends at the dance. I went to a concert, and I would really love to put some lyrics as an overlay on the image of the concert hall I was in. Yesterday I would have loved to put add some music to a video on my Instagram. The temptation is strong, but I have resisted. So far.

My other promise, to blog daily, hasn’t gone quite as well. I have blogged for every day of Lent, but I have not blogged on every day of Lent. I usually blog right before bed – partially because I have been waiting all day for inspiration to hit me and partially because I have just put it off all day. I go to bed around 11 every night, so that gives me just enough time to whip up a few paragraphs before I crawl underneath my warm blankets. On two occasions, I have written what I want to post but forgotten to publish until the next morning. On multiple occasions I have found myself racing the clock to finish my thought and publish before midnight rolls around. But, for the majority, I have been publishing every day with some interesting topics. Some of them have really taken everything in me to dig up. Others came so simply that my brain was coming up with ideas faster than my fingers could type them. So, I am not exactly failing at my Lenten promise – but I’m not succeeding either.

Breaking a Lenten promise is complicated. When I wake up on a morning after I forget to post, I know it the moment my eyes flutter open. I can feel it in my gut, squirming around and waiting to make me sick. There is no making up for my failure on those mornings. Of course, I fly to my phone or laptop and write something up, but it cannot change the fact that I am hours too late. Unlike some of my promises from Lents past, this year I am being held accountable to a much larger pool of people. It isn’t just God keeping tabs, it is you as well. This definitely plays a part in the gut feeling of terribleness that greets me in the morning. It shouldn’t, but it does. So what do I do when I mess up? How do I get back on the wagon?

Well, as a really awful character trait, when I mess up in some aspect of my life I tend to try and ignore it. I put it out of my mind as much as I can, because if I don’t my anxiety with grab it up like candy and drive me up a wall with fear and nervousness. This is bad, but not as bad as me ignoring the things I mess up on. My coping mechanisms could use some work, I’m aware. This Lent I have been rather good about dealing with my mess ups. If I forget to post, and I remember in the morning, I write as soon as I forget. I don’t give it time to sit around and bubble up into something scary. I am really proud of myself for this, even if it seems simple to you. I get back on as soon as possible because it gets harder and harder the longer I wait. If I don’t jump on as soon as I fall off, the wagon will ride off without me and the anxiety will pull me in the opposite direction. This is how I am dealing with breaking my promises. I am not perfect. I pray for God’s mercy, but I am also thankful that he has given me the courage to stay on this Lenten journey. It hasn’t been as easy as I thought it would be.

 

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