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my enten vow

4 March, 2010

At today’s Equation we’ll take some time before Romans 5-6 to discuss the keeping of our Enten tradition, which began Saturday. (If you missed it, don’t worry. One of the beautiful things about Ent is that if you start late, you probably get Ent better than anyone.)  The purpose of this is certainly not to check something off the list, prove our devotion through sacrifice, or earn God’s favour. Such things go against the spirit of Ent. No, the purpose is twofold. First, we want to give something up that will somehow remind us of God’s presence in the same way that reciting the Jesus Prayer or a passage of scripture throughout the day might: something that we will miss throughout the day so that for the 30 days of Ent we are more conscious of Him, and thus more obedient to Him. A further awareness of God’s presence will change the way we live our lives in a hundred little ways, all day long. Second, we want to give something up that will somehow create space for us to seek God more over the Enten season, whether it be through prayer, scripture, time with others, or taking time to rest and meditate.

My Enten vow is to devote the hours after 10:00 pm each day to God as a sort of Sabbath. 10:00 pm is my time. It’s when everyone else in the house has crashed out, and I can work on all the stuff I want to work on for as long as I can possibly stay up. I’ve been using it primarily to catch up on busywork like email, obligatory reading, and maybe to play a relaxing video game before bed, the result being that I push all the crap work in my life to the end of the day, knowing that I’ll have time to get it done. In the half week that I’ve practiced my Enten Sabbaths, my whole day has changed because I know that I have to get that stuff done earlier, and the devoted and set apart time of my day goes toward those things that I actually value the most. I’ve studied the scriptures, done some writing, read books, and spent time with Cerena. It’s been a good change, and something that has shaped my life around God’s presence and helped me to devote my whole day to Him.

What’s your Enten vow?


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