Back in February I signed up for the 40 acts Lent challenge. This involved daily activities to encourage me to live a more generous life. It seemed like a brilliant idea, and for the first few weeks it went really well. Every morning I logged on to the website and considered the daily challenge. Was it something I could do that day or did it need more thought?
Some of the activities were part of my daily life anyway. I have frequent no car days, I regularly buy Fairtrade and I try and build some creativity into my daily life. On those days I would close the computer with a smug expression. Other days, however, were much harder. "Organise a social event and invite a new person?" Social events? It is much as I can do to stay awake after 8pm! "Plant a tree"? Pardon? On which ground? Unfortunately the number of unconquered challenges grew too high and for the last few weeks of Lent I guiltily avoided the website.
However I have now gone back and read through the challenges again, and there are some which I will be doing, but at my own pace:
- Clear out my wardrobe. I badly need to do this! There is a good article on how to get started here.
- Say no to plastic. I already use reusable plastic "bags for life", but it turns out that "life" is about 5 years, and my bags are disintegrating. Rather than buying replacements I am thinking about making my own with my very basic sewing machine skills. It can't be that hard!
- Donate blood. They actually use my church for this, so I have no excuse whatsoever. Must get onto it.
- Live on a fiver a day. Actually, to do this properly I would need to do it for at least a week, and include the rest of the family, so this will need some discussion and negotiation. This may require yet more thought...
So all in all it was a worthwhile experience, and it did make me think more about my faith and the way I live in society.