Today isn’t just any Wednesday, it’s Ash Wednesday, the traditional beginning of Lent. I used to do the whole “giving something up for Lent” thing, but I found that it didn’t help me become more in tune spiritually, or enjoy the spirit of Easter any more, as I was looking forward to getting whatever ‘treat’ I had given up that year. (Granted, this was better than Lent when I was younger and gave up Lima beans or liver which I never liked anyway.) Still, it felt like I was going through the motions. A few years ago, a friend introduced me to the concept of 40 Acts – where instead of giving up something for Lent, you take something on. While I’ve moved away from organized religion for the time being, I love this concept of giving of myself for 40 days. I can do that in whatever way I feel is best (though if I’m stuck for ideas the 40 acts website has some), whether that’s helping a friend online, donating to the local food bank, or volunteering at the local thrift store.