From Where I Stand: Lent

The observance of Lent, once connected mainly to Catholicism, has enjoyed a recent surge in acceptance by Protestant denominations and even some progressive churches of Christ. While it is a matter of personal discretion to abstain from certain harmless things, giving up sinful behaviors should not be confined to a forty-day respite, but should be treated more urgently and permanently. The New Testament even anticipates the development of such self-appeasing customs: “These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh” (Colossians 2:23).