Lent is a special time of year, a season of 40 days not counting Sundays and actually covers 46 calendar days. The first day of Lent 2017 is Wednesday 1st March 2017 – Ash Wednesday. The final day of Lent 2017 is Thursday 13th April 2017 – Holy Thursday. Today (Mar 09) as I write is day 9 of Lent 2017!
Lent is a time of reflection, a time of repentance, a time of renewal when we prepare our hearts for Easter and our encounter with the Risen Lord. My question to you is – are you making time for Lent?
Some Lenten truths we reflect upon:
- We must pass through the wilderness to enter the promised land
- Satan is like a roaring lion, roaming to and fro, seeking those he may devour
- We must endure and overcome many temptations while in the wilderness
- A life of faith is lived out traveling thru the wilderness
- A Faith that can’t be tested is a Faith that can’t be trusted
Robert Bachelder in Between Dying and Birth wrote;
Temptation is no less terrible for Christians today than it was for those of Peter’s time. We live in a pagan culture. There is a constant temptation for us to fall away from our faith toward the prevailing hedonism. There is a steady temptation to go after the great gods of pleasure and materialism. We have our choices to make! But do you know something? This fact should not discourage us. Instead, it should hearten us. It means not only that we are free to reject God, but that we also are free to choose God, even amidst those forces which prey upon life.
This is one meaning of a moving story related by Elie Wiesel. He tells of a teacher, a just man, who came to Sodom, determined to save its inhabitants from sin and punishment. Night and day he walked the streets and the markets protesting against greed and theft, falsehood and indifference. In the beginning, people listened and smiled ironically; then they stopped listening, and he no longer even amused them. The killers went on killing; the wise kept silent, as if there were no just men in their midst. One day a child, moved by compassion for the unfortunate teacher, approached him with these words: “You shout, you scream. Don’t you see that it is hopeless?” “Yes, I see,” answered the just man. “Then why do you go on?”
“I’ll tell you why,” said the just man. “In the beginning …I thought I could change them; today I know that I cannot. If I shout, if I still scream, it is not to change them. It is to prevent them from changing me.” — CSS Publishing Company
Lent is a time for us to examine ourselves and asses our spiritual growth in the last year. A time to acknowledge our faults and failures and put them under the blood of Christ. A time to repent lest we repeat our sins, and turn back to God with all our hearts. We live in a world under siege and I truly believe our greatest challenge is to prevent “them” from changing us.
We have been called to be salt and light in world that desperately needs both. We need to take Lent very seriously if we are to resist the world and live a Christ like life. We must not settle. We must not be satisfied with being like them, our call is to be like Him, like Jesus.
Are you making time for Lent?