Wednesday, February 22, 2012

On Sacrifices

"(But) take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them; otherwise, you will have no recompense from your heavenly Father. When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your almsgiving may be secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you." (Matthew 6:1-4)

It's Ash Wednesday, and for the past few days, my Twitter and Facebook feeds have shown so many people declaring their sacrifices for Lent. I used to do this too, before the age of Facebook. But one day I thought about why I had to tell the world what I was giving up. Was I asking people to help me stick to my commitment? Or was I looking for praise ("Wow, ang galing mo naman, 40 days without chocolate!")? When I was completely honest with myself, it was mostly because of the latter. It was then that I realized that a sacrifice made for God was best kept between a person and God. I know (or at least hope) that those making sacrifices mean well and have the best intentions--but perhaps, to think about their motives would be a good spiritual exercise.

While I do not consider myself religious, I invite you--one sinner to another (haha), trying to be a better person--to reflect with me: What does one hope to achieve by giving something up? Is it necessary for everyone else to know? For what purpose? I, for one, seem to have forgotten the essence of sacrifice--what does it do for one's soul exactly? Might God (and my fellowmen) be better served by good works rather than self-denial?

Have a blessed Lenten season, everyone.


  1. Now I understand why I prefer to do good deeds anonymously--Matthew must have gotten into my subconscious. =)

  2. is almsgiving considered a good deed? still debating this issue up to now.. :( hmm..I don't really abstain from anything even during the lenten season..does that make me a bad person? many questions..

    I just watched "Walk to Remember"..gayahin ko si Mandy Moore...
    "I believe God wants me to be happy." :)

  3. I still haven't decided what to sacrifice this Lenten season. But I don't want to announce it to the world either. Sometimes come to think of it diets can sometimes be self serving, but that's just me. I really, really want to make this Lent more meaningful by making someone happy or just helping out people in my own special way. But still undecided...hehehe!


Oh, so sweet of you to drop a line!:)