Thoughts On Lent
(Art by Bible Project)
Recently I began to feel shame that I haven't been meeting my sacrificial goals during this season of Lent. Immediately it was like God said to me, "That's the entire purpose of Easter."
I got to thinking about that...and even though I am still convicted at the fact that I wasn't consistent or even became legalistically check list minded regarding my personal sacrifices during Lent, I realize that what Jesus accomplished during the 40 days in the wilderness was on my behalf. And it was on all of our behalfs.
The struggle we face during Lent is to bring us closer to the ultimate sacrificial message of Jesus accomplishing the things that humanity couldn't so all people from every nation could, once again, be with God in fellowship. Jesus broke the curse of sin and death because WE couldn't do it.
So if you're like me and feel like you "failed" at Lent this year, the fact of the matter is...that's kind of the point of the gospel. No matter what we do, we will not be able to accomplish a consistently holy attitude and mindset because of the darkness that is in and around us in our everyday lives. So what better end could we, who feel ashamed of our Lenten behaviors, ask for than Holy Week, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday?
We can't accomplish holiness on our own. That was the biggest takeaway from Lent for me this year. I didn't measure up. I didn't even try my best. I didn't even want to sometimes. Yet, regardless, Jesus' free gift is here because of this week. His accomplishments become ours and we don't ever have to live in shame, because of what He has done on our behalf. We are not only free from the darkness in and around us but free to live in the light of eternity now, where we are. We don't have to clean ourselves up before entering in. We don't have to worry about not measuring up.
I know a lot of churches say really nice things, but either don't truly believe, or live this out terribly. But the truth of the matter is, God really did and does make a way for all of us to walk with Him and come together to make this world a little more like heaven every day. Together with Him, we can follow Jesus' lead and make all things new.
Come and See.