I want to talk about this season of Lent we are about to conclude. It is not something everyone, even those of faith, practices. Where did it come from and what does it mean?
Lent is a shortened form of the Old English word lencten which means “spring season”. It coincided with that time of year that brought a lengthening of daylight hours and a renewal of the Earth.
It relates to religion through the scriptures regarding Jesus undergoing a 40-day fast. This account is given in Mark 1:13, Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13.
For people of faith, it is a time of renewal and accepting the grace God freely gives us. It is a time to reflect and adjust our sails if you will, to follow Him more closely.
While many outside of the Catholic faith do not practice Lent, in light of COVID, we have all essentially been forced to. We have all had to give up something, or several somethings due to this pandemic.
No gatherings, no dinners, no church services, no work. For a time, we were confined to our homes. It caused a lot of people to pause and reflect about their life and current trajectory they were on.
It caused many to re-evaluate what was truly important.
As time wore on, people faced more difficult challenges than just being stuck inside four walls. There were lost jobs, lost money, lost health…lost lives.
In this unasked-for time of “lent” (yes, I am stretching a bit), many turned back to faith looking for something to provide hope.
Sacrifice costs. But God. His promises are true. He will keep us, provide for us. He will see us through.
He is the hope and the firm foundation people are needing. He is the strength they are seeking, the comfort to hold them up during trying times.
Jesus Christ, King of the Jews. Beaten, spit on, crucified. Blood spilled for sins he did not commit.
All so we could be free. So we could have hope and life eternal.
In this season, as Lent is coming to an end, take some time to reflect on His sacrifice. And how you can talk about what you have sacrificed for Lent. How that conversation could be what draws someone to the ultimate sacrifice.
They are looking for Him. Let’s help guide them to Him.