What is Lent? Lent is a 40 day period prior to Easter, it begins on Ash Wednesday. Lent usually skips Sundays, although there are some different ways of approaching that.
Lent isn’t “just a Catholic thing.” Lent originated in the early church and was meant to help people remember and prepare for Easter. Specifically to remember the journey of Christ in the days before his death.
We are currently in the last two weeks of lent. Many believers around the world observe Lent. It is meant to be a six week time of soul searching, reflection, and repentance.
During Lent many people observe a period of fasting, self denial and spiritual discipline. All with the purpose of focusing more intentionally on Jesus, his life leading up to the cross, and his suffering on the cross.
Matthew 4 – God has given us the desires and needs that need to be fulfilled. Satan asked Jesus to turn the stones into bread. The problem here isn’t the bread, it is the “getting it the wrong way,” that is the issue here.
The second temptation (to throw himself off the temple and expect God to take care of him) is to expect God to take care of us when we are reckless or when we aren’t doing what the Father wants us to do.
The third temptation (to worship Satan) is to demand someone to serve us, but refuse to serve them, to expect others to trust us when we don’t trust them.
Lessons from Lent
Luke 9:51-56 – Jesus steadfastly set his face to go towards Jerusalem, even though he knew what was waiting for him there. He was resolutely committed to fulfill his purpose unwaveringly. The time had arrived, Jesus knew it was time for him to go to the cross, so he resolved to do it.
Will we follow Jesus wherever He wants you to go? Where he wants you to go may not be where he wants someone else to go.
Put your hand to the plow, don’t look back. Set your eye on the goal and head towards it focusing intentionally on that goal.
The Bible doesn’t teach us to “go in our own strength” that isn’t the way of the Bible. But it does require some effort on our part.
The cross that we are called to bear is more than just “the hard things of life.” It is more of trusting God in the hard things, giving up the need to always have things “our way.”
Luke 19:28-48 – The disciples didn’t know what to do with Jesus. The things he was saying were going to happen didn’t fit with the things that they thought he should or was going to do.
Jesus lead the way. He was praised and worshiped as he road along the road on the colt. This praise didn’t last long.
Anything that you do (fasting, prayer, studying) that helps you think about and focus on Jesus and the areas in your heart and life that need cleansing will certainly be helpful.
Isaiah 66:10-14 is a scripture that is good to meditate on during this time of Lent.