What did you “give up” for Lent? Has it helped you in your preparation for Easter? Jesus went out into the Wilderness in a time of preparation for His ministry to come. It was the custom then to fast, to give up something (mainly food) to help focus the mind. We know He didn’t starve, we believe He was challenged and He came through those challenges strengthened for the work ahead.
We too face those Wilderness times in our own lives. Circumstances change; the direction of our life is challenged, often by forces over which we have no control. We need “space” to reflect. We need space to allow us to find ourselves. Lent is a time to make space. Giving up can give us that space, but it can go beyond material things, we can give up our time to listen to the needs of others, we can give up our strength to help another carry their burden, we can give up our joy to make others happy. Jesus “gave up” everything for us on the Cross, He could have chosen another time, another place but He didn’t. Through giving up, we receive
God of Grace:
we would max out every credit card
and empty our bank accounts
if we thought we could buy
that peace, that hope,
that mercy, that joy
which always seem to elude us.
Yet you wrap them up and hand them to us,
with no price tag attached.
We hold our empty lives
out to the world,
begging to be filled to the brim
with all that will only disappoint us.
Yet you would grace us with living waters,
which never run dry.
We lie awake at night
from the insomnia of our stress,
whispering of our fears.
Yet you would lullaby us
with your love which never ends.
We lift our hearts to you,
God in Community, Holy in One,
trusting that you will listen to us.