After the festivities of the Super Bowl and Mardi Gras, we have now entered into the time of Lent. Lent is the season of the Christian Year that covers the period of approximately six weeks leading up to Easter Sunday. The traditional purpose of Lent is to prepare the believer for the experience of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. During Lent, many Christians commit to fasting or giving up some favorite thing, either as a form of penitence or in imitation of the 40 days that Jesus spent fasting in the wilderness before beginning his public ministry.
It used to be that we would be asked to give up something we liked as a personal sacrifice that would be pleasing to God. Rev. Elder Darlene Garner prepared a Lenten meditation that asks the question: what are we willing to give up this year that will bring holiness to our lives, strength to our church, and peace to the world?
- Our lives would become more holy if we gave up gossip rather than gum; if we let go of our need to dominate others rather than simply giving up our desire to dine out; if we covered our attitudes with gratitude instead of merely covering our foreheads with ashes.
- Our church would become stronger if we gave up on trying to escape from our responsibility to care for one another instead of giving up on each other; if we gave up criticizing instead of giving up caffeine.
- Our world would have more peace if we gave up being apathetic by investing 25 minutes a day in prayerful action for the cause of human rights.
Let’s try it, even if only for the next forty days. If we do, we might be surprised to discover the glory that will await us on Easter morning. Something to think about, isn’t it.
With many blessings and love,