From Your Pastors’ Desk
There seems to be a lot of hype for Lent, but what does Lent even mean? Lent is the liturgical season of the 40 days before Easter (not including Sundays). Lent comes to us from a practice of the early church. It used to be the practice that most people got baptized on Easter, and Lent, the 40 days before Easter, was a time of preparation for baptism, of both learning and repentance. The early church chose for Lent to last 40 days to reflect the 40 days Jesus spent in the wilderness in preparation for his baptism and ministry. While, we no longer practice this cycle of baptisms, Lent is no less significant.
There are many different ways to practice Lent, but ultimately it is all about drawing closer to our God. It is mostly known for a time of fasting or denying oneself from something. For example, the Catholics abstain from eating meat on Fridays, many give up chocolates or sweets, and if you remember we as a congregation sought to eat simply last year. These practices of fasting or self-denial are to help each person recognize the suffering of Christ. While we may not fully comprehend what Christ went through it draws us a bit closer to God. But, fasting isn’t the only way to recognize Lent in your own spiritual walk, many choose a new spiritual practice in this time. You could choose daily intentional prayer, reading a particular part of the Bible, or working to serve others. The opportunities are endless, yet they are and always should be about ways you can get to know the savior of the world more closely.
Lent is a gift. It is a gift of time set apart. Yes, we should always be seeking to be closer to God, but this is a time when we can really focus on that purpose. If you didn’t get a chance to start on Ash Wednesday (March 1st) that’s okay, you can start now, because the creator of the universe and our savior desperately desires for you to draw close.
Pastor Cheryl and Pastor Bala Khyllep