Growing up my faith tradition did little to recognize, in fact we seemed to ignore, the season of Lent. We had a great Easter morning celebration but everything leading up to Easter did not seem to be important.
In recent years God has really worked in my life to help me see how much I was missing by focusing solely on the Easter morning celebration.
In Matthew we read that after Jesus baptism, “…Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. After fasting for forty days and nights…” (Mt. 4:1-2 NIV)
Jesus spent forty days in the desert in a season of prayer and preparation before beginning his ministry. At the conclusion of those forty days was when Jesus was tested. Jesus was tempted to use the power that is his as the Son of God for personal gain rather than for the good of others. Jesus withstands that testing and after the time of prayer and fasting, and passing the test placed before him enters into his season of ministry.
Observing Lent is one way that we, as Christians, can join Jesus on His retreat into the wilderness.
Whether by prayer, fasting or reflection (or a combination of those) we can join with Jesus in seeking to know the will of God for our lives, counting the cost to see if we are willing to truly live as disciples of Jesus, and then go forth into mission and ministry.
Lent is a time for somber reflection, self-examination and spiritual redirection.
I have come to appreciate this season of the year. While it seems to be extremely busy it also provides a special focus on my spiritual health and my commitment to walk beside my Savior and Lord.
May you find this Lenten Season to be a time rich with exploring in deeper ways the person and work of Jesus Christ.