Today starts Lent, with that I want to give a brief explanation of what Lent is, and why you may want to observe it.
Lent is a time of spiritual reflection, repentance and a time to renew our faith in, and focus on Christ. Lent begins 40 days before Easter (not counting Sundays). Why 40 days? 40 has much symbolic meaning in the scriptures. The rain time during the flood that destroyed the earth in Noah’s day lasted 40 days. The children of Israel wandered in the wilderness for 40 years, and Jesus faced temptation in the desert for 40 days.
Lent is a time of spiritual reflection, repentance and a time to renew our faith in, and focus on Christ.
12 “Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” 13 Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. 14 Who knows? He may turn and relent and leave behind a blessing— grain offerings and drink offerings for the LORD your God. Joel 2:12-14
Three practices take place during the time of Lent.
* Prayer and Repentance
Prayer and Repentance
There is a time for prayer and reflection that leads to repentance. It is also a time we make focused effort to draw closer to God, to reflect on who He is. It is also a time to renew our hope in Jesus Christ.
Fasting is a time we choose to go without something, whether it is food or some other item. The purpose is to help us focus on our dependence on God.
The giving aspect is about us giving back and serving others. There are different ways you can do this, such as helping with some charitable organization or giving of your time, talents and treasures.
As you can see, Lent is a great time to set our affection on God the Father, for all that He is, On God the Son, for the work, He has done in securing our redemption, and God the Spirit who is our helper in all things.
In the weeks to come, I will also be posting scriptures that will be helpful during the Lenten season.
** You may be asking should Evangelicals participle in Lent? Here is a great article that could shed some light on that question.