Updated: Mar 2
Christmas. Easter. Two well-known times of the year that, specifically, are recognized by the Christian Church. In some ways, these two holidays are the largest gatherings of the year for the church, but what about the seasons that surround them?
In recent years, there seems to have been a recovering of the “Advent” season leading up to Christmas within the evangelical church. Advent encompasses the four weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This particular season focuses on preparing for the expectant coming of Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, in certain evangelical circles, there is a lot of attention given to Advent but not much given towards Lent.
What about Easter? If you have been around the church for any length of time, you know that Easter is the time Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. In celebrating the resurrection, we recognize that Jesus Christ dies on the cross. The time leading up to Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection is known as Lent. The duration of the season is 40 days beginning on Ash Wednesday and concluding on Easter.
The season of Lent is typically marked by the giving up of something. Although it is a commonly talked about season, historically it has been observed by those of the Catholic faith. It has not been a widespread practice of many other denominations or faith practices, however, that does not mean that no one else participates in Lent. I believe it would be of great benefit and encouragement for us to lean into the season of Lent to adequately prepare our hearts as we remember the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In doing so, I offer three challenges or prompts to consider:
Pray (1 John 5:14). I would invite all of us to pray about participating in the Lenten season. In your prayers, seek wisdom from the Lord in recognizing something in your life that has become a focal point that is distracting from serving the Lord.
Fast (Luke 4:2-4). The season of lent is commonly spoken of as a time to give up or fast from something. We do not fast simply to deny ourselves, but to sacrifice that particular thing to spend more time with the Lord.
Celebrate (Psalm 95:2). The culmination of this 40 day period is the celebration of Jesus Christ being resu
rrected from the grave! Let’s do just that – CELEBRATE!!!
During Lent 2022, I will be utilizing a simple reading plan from YouVersion entitled “Experiencing Jesus Together through Lent,” and I would love to have you join me. You can find the plan here: https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/18351-experiencing-jesus-together-through-lent or your YouVersion Bible app.
As we draw close to Lent, I pray that you will consider participating this year for God’s glory.