Why Lent? I'm Not Catholic
As many of you know, today is Fat Tuesday and tomorrow, Ash Wednesday, kicks off 40 days of Lent. I've read a lot of Facebook and Twitter posts the last few days from people who are participating in Lent and then some from others who are maybe being a bit critical and questioning why an evangelical Christian would participate. I had never even considered practicing Lent until last year, simply because, well, I was ignorant. I thought it was only something that my Catholic and some of my Methodist friends participated in. I grew up in a Pentecostal church where Lent was never talked about nor practiced.
My eyes were not really opened to it until a dear friend & one of my mentors, Becky Hennesy, began Facebooking and Tweeting last year about how they were encouraging their church in Cedar Hill, TX to participate in Lent. Because they took that step last year... it is simply amazing the testimonies that have come out of their church and community from it!
Lent is all about selfishness dying & generosity living. It's about sacrifice. Christ paid the ultimate sacrifice for us. He died so that we could live. Our friend, Chris McCool, posted this about Lent "It incites in us the sacrifice Jesus made for us as we fast. As we find quiet corners in our day to speak with God, we share the same silence as Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. Likewise, as Jesus stood between us and God we show justice toward others during Lent (as we should 365 days a year)."
Becky Hennesy also says this about Lent, "40 days of my decrease, gives opportunity for God increase". Giving up something for 40 days allows us to humble ourselves and allow God to do a work in our hearts and opens our eyes to what's happening in the world around us. It helps us see that it's not all about us! It helps us LIVE OUT the Christian life and not just talk about it.
Becky's husband, Pastor Jim Hennesy of Trinity Church, just shared an incredible sermon on Lent this past Sunday. I encourage you to listen to it here if you would like to hear more about the power of participating in Lent!
Micah 6:8 describes what the Lord requires of us : "To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God." My prayer during Lent is that I would begin to fully walk out those three things. I invite you to prayerfully consider joining me on this journey. I'm excited to see what God is going to do!