Lent starts tomorrow and while I’m not Catholic or part of any of the churches that traditionally celebrate Lent, but this year the Lord has pressed upon my heart to participate in Lent.
It started around Christmas when I was thinking of the coming of the birth of Christ. We have this big glorious celebration around His birth, but what do we do for His resurrection? This was the question that I kept asking myself.
How can I make these special times more about Him?
Then I had a discussion with my friend Malak. Malak lives in Egypt, and he is part of the Coptic Church of Egypt. We were talking about the differences between the churches in America and the Church in Egypt, and we discussed the topic of fasting and Lent.
(The Coptic Church fasts for over 200 days every year.)
A short time after that I did some research on the Coptic Church and on Lent. Then I read a book titled The Jesus Life by Stephen W. Smith, and in it he talks about the importance of festivals in Jesus’ life.
Then shortly after that I read “5 Ways to Revolutionize Your Walk with Christ” by Margaret Feinberg.
Since then I have also read several posts on Ann Voskamp’s blog A Holy Experience about Lent.
And I have made a commitment to participating in Lent this year.
Because I have learned the meaning behind Lent.
Lent is not simply about fasting and sacrificing for God.
Lent is about preparing our hearts for the resurrection.
Lent is about Christ and His resurrection.
Lent is about getting rid of the old creation and replacing it with the new creation.
Lent is about letting go of the idols that hold us back from loving God as we should and letting God do the work He wants to complete in our hearts.
Lent is meant to turn our hearts to Christ.
And that is why I am participating in the festival of Lent this year…I want to turn my heart to Christ.
Would you like to join me in this celebration this year?
Here are some resources to get you started:
1) 5 Ways to Revolutionize Your Walk with Christ by Margaret Feinberg This article has links to her 40-day New Testament Challenge.
2) The Love Idol Movement that Jennifer Dukes Lee is starting.
3) Why You May Really Really Need Lent This Year by Ann Voskamp