Last year I had a great time writing confessions everyday on my blog for Lent. I like Lent. I'm not a Catholic but I really do like the idea of giving something up or doing something differently. I realize that my lame offering for Lent last year may be seen to others as mockery perhaps but I assure you it is not. My confessions last year really helped me to reflect and be grateful for so many blessings in my life. I take a lot for granted and I'm already excited for my new plan this year. Although there is some silliness to my plan, there actually is some sincerity and interest in making self-improvement.
I was talking with some co-workers the other day about what to do for Lent. One of my co-workers brought up a very good point. For Lent she tries, instead of giving something up, giving back. She seeks out shelters and other programs that she can volunteer a few hours each week. We talked about how this is another way to be reflective on all the capabilities and resources we have and offer it to someone else. Another factor leading to my decision this year was a talk we had in church last Sunday. An institute missionary couple was speaking to us and the Sister was talking about kindness. It was an enjoyable talk and one I've thought about since. One thing she offered was that a compliment withheld is a criticism. Interesting, I thought.
For Lent this year I would like to offer a compliment a day. There are many times, I'm sure, when I am complimentary to others, but this will be something that I plan to put energy into. It's an opportunity to open my eyes, view this interesting world around me and find honest sincere ways to compliment (perhaps when it seems un-compliment-able?) I couldn't help but think about this like my own version of a stimulus package. Some people have gone a long time without compliments, sometimes because they don't deserve them. I will fix this. I am going to saturate my immediate world with kindness and compliments to the undeserving, the ungrateful, and the unsuspecting.
I will also seek out an hour a week to dedicate in some kind of service capacity of which I am not already involved.