Saturday, February 28, 2009

Giving up dessert for Lent...

Another year, another Lenten season. I'm still Southern Baptist and sometimes I wonder if it would be helpful for us to celebrate something such as this. I did not participate in Fat Tuesday, although I thought some pancakes would be delicious. Ash Wednesday came and went for me. I have the need to confess my sins everyday and have an amazing High Priest who serves as a mediator to God on my behalf. Yesterday I listened to an Ash Wednesday service podcast. My thinking and views of Lent have changed.

Most people give up something and play this card, "I'm giving up chocolate for Jesus. I get to experience His sufferings by suffering without chocolate for 40 days." It made me sad that I could compare giving up something so insignificant to His great sufferings. The Bible says in Isaiah 53, "But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed." No way in the world could giving up chocolate, caffeine, desserts or any other thing compare to Him being wounded, crushed, and beaten.

This year I've given up eating dessert, not so in the end I can say "Woohoo, I gave up dessert for Jesus." No, I'm giving up something I enjoy with a desire to focus my heart and mind on the greatest event that ever was or ever will be in human history. For believers nothing of this world should have control over your life, but Jesus. I'm focusing on some inward changes in my life as well, which I may blog about if God gives me some victory in this area. I want to be excited about Easter. We countdown to Christmas and make it a huge deal, but Easter suddenly comes on us and we go into superspiritual mode. My desire is to be ever mindful of His death and resurrection. This event changed my life forever and has taken a fallen human and gave the promise and hope of eternal life. This is cause for celebration and reflection, more than just one Sunday of the year.

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