It’s been 38 days and 38 nights since Lent has started. Before Lent began (or was it shortly after it started?) I made a decision to not drink alcohol or eat chocolate as my Lenten resolution, in an effort of self-improvement. In the interest of honesty, I was not perfect in my attempts, but in my defense, my lapses were more the result of a desire to be accommodating rather than my own self-weakness. Let me explain.
First failure: One Sunday, early in Lent, we had some friends ’round to the house for Sunday tea and biscuits. We served mini chocolate muffins (I know, why didn’t we serve something else?) and in an effort to be polite to our guests, I ate two chocolate muffins. Or was it three? Either way, they were mini. Even three combined would hardly equal a full, regular size muffin.
Second failure: A few days after my first fall, my wife asked me to join her in a glass of wine with our curry. Rather than be rude or unaccommodating, I agreed to indulge her wishes. Being the good husband that I strive to be, I did enjoy a small glass of red wine. Of course it was red, it was a good spicy curry after all.
Third failure: Perhaps deliberate circumvention would be a more accurate description. I had some family in town for five nights and I thought it would be rude not to show them the local pub – my local – as well as some of the finer drinking establishments that Oxford has to offer. And well, they needed to know that Cobra beer goes so well with a curry. And who else could have introduced them to Addlestone’s? Thank you very much. (By the way, this third failure really was planned. I knew my college-aged family would like a night or two out, so as Lent started I decided that I would set aside the Lenten booze restrictions for the duration of the visit.)
So, did I improve during Lent? Did my admittedly less than perfect attempts at self-control bring me closer to the Divine? The answer to that question is a blog for another day …