Lent is a season of preparation and (an unpopular word in today's culture) self-disciple. It begins on Ash Wednesday (Feb 13th) and concludes at sun-down on Holy Saturday (Mar 30th, the day before Easter Sunday).During the forty weekdays and six Sundays in Lent, Christians traditionally remember the sacrificial life and ministry of Jesus leading to his death on the cross. Lent is a time for renewing our commitment to following Jesus as his disciples or apprentices.
The forty weekdays also remind us of the forty days Jesus spent fasting in the desert before the beginning of his public ministry. Because of this, some Christians choose to fast from something during Lent. I've heard of people giving up chocolate or a favourite TV programme. This might sound silly and even unnecessary, but it has the benefit of reminding ourselves that our wants and desires don't need to rule our life.
Sometimes Christians do extra kind and generous things during Lent to share Jesus' love with others.This Lent my wife Sue and I have decided to be more disciplined in our prayer together. We have much to pray about in life and ministry and yet sometimes it can be difficult to synchronise time together to pray. Hence our resolve. We have also downloaded some Reflections for Lent (one Bible reading and reflection each week for seven weeks.) If you would like to do these readings and reflections at home, you can download the resource from the Presbyterian Church website.
When we spend time reading the Bible and seeking God in prayer, we catch the heartbeat of God and hear his call to care for those who are poor, vulnerable, lost and lonely. Other spiritual disciplines help us train to be more like Jesus, allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us and through us to others.
May you know God's blessing this Lent,