Lent 1 - The time has come
Lent is a season in the Christian Church where we relate to Jesus' time spent in the wilderness. After Jesus was baptised, he went out into the wilderness for 40 days. Here, he resisted temptations from Satan and prepared himself for his coming ministry to the world.
Lent is a 40-day season that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Palm Sunday.
In many church traditions, Christians will use the period of Lent as an opportunity to "give up" certain delicacies (such as eating particular foods or watching TV) as an act of fasting.
Fasting helps us draw nearer to God. As we crave that which we have given up, we are reminded of Christ's temptations in the wilderness and we are invited into a moment of prayer and sacrifice to God.
Sometimes during Lent, instead of giving something up for 40 days, I like to commit to taking up a "good deed" during this time. This could be reading a few chapters of my Bible every day, handing sandwiches out to those in need on the way to work, or journaling. The act of committing to something new and good helps me draw near to God in the same way as giving up a delicacy would do.
What could you give up or take up during this season of Lent that will help you draw nearer to God in the coming weeks?
Just as Jesus used his time in the wilderness to prepare himself for his future ministry to the world, Lent is a time for self-examination and correction. As we fast and draw nearer to God during the season of Lent, we are called to repent of all our wrongdoings and encouraged to recommit our lives to Jesus and his cause.
Perhaps this season of Lent, we can use this time to refocus our lives on God's mission for the world so that we too can claim with Jesus: "The time has come. The Kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!"
Prayer: Lord Jesus, as we face temptation in our lives, may we be reminded that we are not alone. You too experienced temptation. Help us overcome our temptations as You did. During this season of Lent, may we draw near to You at every possible moment as we prepare ourselves to declare: "The time has come; The Kingdom of God is near." Amen
Image Source: Nathan Dumlao