Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Goodbye, Internet! Hello, Lent!

As many of you know, tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the often-neglected season of Lent in which Christians spiritually prepare for the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Easter Sunday. Usually, this preparation is symbolized by "giving up something" for the forty days and nights that make up Lent.

This year, I've decided that the Internet, when used for purposes other than scholarship and direct communication, has been somewhat distracting in my relationship with Christ. So, though I'm sure this may upset some readers, I'm deciding to give it up for forty days starting tomorrow. Yep. That means no blogging, no online debates, no Facebook, no AIM, nothing. The only thing I'm going to use the Internet for is e-mail.

Oh... and watching episodes of the new season of Survivor on YouTube. I would watch them when they air on Thursday nights if I could, but my Campus Crusade meetings are at the same time, so...

So, what will I be doing instead?

Well, I will mainly be taking more time to read my Bible. It's great to hear other people's opinions on Scripture through the blogs and through online sermons and such, but I haven't even read through it myself, and I need to fix that. I'll also be trying to make my social life more active. Online communication is great, and I've made lots of great contacts with really cool people, but I think I need to focus on my real-life friends. They're the ones that I can be a more effective witness to, and who, in turn, know me well enough to be great accountability partners and spiritual guides.

I realized if I didn't have the Internet, then I really wouldn't have too many friends... and that wasn't exactly a good thing. I'm not going to try to make a ton of really deep, personal friends in the next forty days, but making a few couldn't hurt. And without the Internet around, I might have more time to hang out, go shopping, play tennis, swim, watch movies, work out, read books, write in my novel, play Guitar Hero, volunteer, etc. Simply put, it's been a little hard living a life for Christ when I've been spending so much of my time in a virtual world (great though all you folks in here are).

Now, I won't be out of touch completely. I would love to get e-mails from all of you guys telling me how you're doing or what's on your mind, and I'll try to respond to them as much as I can. I almost wish I could correspond with all of you people in pen and ink like people in Victorian England used to, but alas... the Internet will just have to do.

Other than that, I hope you all have a great Lent. I still get comments via e-mail notifications, so tell me what you think of my Lent plan, and also let me know what you're planning on giving up (if anything). I can't say I'll comment back, but I'll definitely read. God bless you all!


Pomoprophet said...

you'll be missed friend!

Brandon said...

I concur with Pomo.

Great idea about reading through the entire Bible. My preacher led a "Through the Bible in a year" course back in 2006 and I know that certainly helped me to understand a great deal more. Though, I'll admit, I never did read it all the way through. I have read all of the New Testament, but a few books I still haven't got around to in the Old Testament. Duetoronomy is just so incredibly boring!!! As with a few others I've attempted. Anyway, great idea to read through it. It would probably help you a great deal to have a Bible with study notes or commentary in the footnotes. That was a big help for me.

I'll miss reading your blog, but I like your plan. Sounds like you're doing this for very good reasons. Keep it up, and God bless ya.


Joe said...

Well I've decided to dedicate the whole of Lent to watching 1960s girl groups on YouTube. I'm working my way through the Shangri-Las oeuvre as I type this.

Have a great Lent Jay.


David Roberts said...

I don't think I would agree with the idea that online friends are not "real" friends -- communication is communication, whether one is in the room with the other person or not. It certainly lacks a physical aspect that I think is necessary for an intimate relationship, but for other discussions I am often more candid online than I would be in person.

Either way, it's good to mix up your life now and then, and certainly if it means spending more one-on-one studying scripture and listening to God. I hope you find it helpful.

kurt_t said...

OK, Lent is over. Enough with the goldbricking.