This will be the first year that I will be fully participating in Lent. As someone who has been around Church and Christ a long time, I’m kind of embarrassed to admit that. But there it is, I am observing Lent for the first time.
As to why I never took part in this observation of sacrifice before, I think a large part was denominational. Lent just wasn’t something that the people I worshiped with practiced. We observed Christmas, Holy Week and many other traditional Christian celebrations like lost souls being found and weddings.
During college I was introduced to a lot of different people from a lot of different denominations. I remember hearing about Lent and that people gave things up, but it still didn’t resonate with me. Looking back over this past year, I’m seeing that a lot of my hesitation in participating in Lent had to do with trust. If I don’t trust that God’s provision is for me, how can I participate in a practice that requires me to lean into His power? How can I say God will be there to meet my need for whatever I feel led to give up if I don’t trust that God will do that?
This past year has also taught me to trust in God. In both little and big ways, God has been showing me over and over how he loves and cares for me. That is awakening in me a desire to extend more and more of myself into His care. So when the Lenten season drew near I heard a calling to observe this long practiced tradition. It hasn’t been easy. We are only going into the second week and I feel like it’s the longest ten days of my life. And I know we have thirty more to go. Every time I have a craving for what I am giving up, it causes me to lean a little more into Jesus, and less on myself. Which is what I think Lent is all about. Learning to lean less on me and more on Christ.
Blessings in this Lenten Season