The season on Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, with the ashes signifying a reminder of the temporary home we have here on earth. Lent is a period of 40 days (excluding Sundays) prior to Easter Sunday. During this time, we observe moderation and discipline– spiritually and physically. As we set time aside daily to reflect on Jesus Christ’s suffering and sacrifice, we are able to mourn the pain that sin inflicts, repent our sins, and celebrate the gift of life we are giving in His resurrection.
This morning, a group of us gathered together to partake in communion, worship acoustically with Aaron Smith, and receive ashes.
Our good friend Kurt Willems offers a further view into what Lent means to us today.
This particular season, Lent, is a time to enter into the dark places within our souls. We are invited to allow the Holy Spirit to search us and to know our hearts. We call attention to the things that bind us up from living out the reality of the Kingdom of God and attempt to starve them. In a nation of affluence and values that often corrupts the beauty of the cross, sometimes our gluttonous lives need to have a time to experience a hint of starvation. For some this is literal (those who fast from food during Lent) and for others this is metaphorical (those who starve their subtle idols).
My default, often influenced by my American affluence, is to abstractly believe in “the fundamental change of life required of those who would die with Jesus and be raised to new life in him,” but to concretely reach for comfort. Ash Wednesday is a chance to confront these sorts of tendencies—to starve them.
#1 Starving our idols places our lives with Jesus in the desert.
#2 Starving places us in solidarity with our sisters and brothers throughout the world who barely have enough bread to live.
#3 Starving reminds us that Jesus was a human who chose each moment to live by the “word of God.”
#4 Starving creates space for a proverbial kick in the @$$ to remind us that the American Dream is the very thing robbing us of a more intimate relationship with God.
For more reflections on each of these points, visit Kurt’s blog.
We invite you to starve along with us by fasting, praying, and giving. Join us on these social networks for daily ways to engage the season of Lent.
**See the full calendar of FAST-PRAY-GIVE at http://bustedhalo.com/features/fast-pray-give-2013