Wednesday, March 17, 2010

"Honest To God", Celebrating Lent Prepares Us for Easter

It's over half way through Lent, and I'm happy to report that I haven't eaten any meat or drank alcohol, but I have been praying much more and reading Scripture daily. If you've been fasting and sacrificing, you might be feeling a little tired. I found a great article that hopefully will inspire you to stay motivated. It's called "Honest to God" by the Reverend Kenneth Collins. Here is an excerpt:

"We avoid Lent and Holy Week because it isn't a happy and uplifting time--but to be honest, neither is most of life. Sometimes we come to church all scrubbed up, dressed nicely, with smiles on our faces, and when people ask how we are, we reply that we are, we reply that everything is fine and we even boast how wonderful things are--but it is all a lie. Life is not always uplifting, or wonderful, or pleasant or joyous--but we have been taught the lie that for spiritual people like us, , it must be so. So we become play actors, hypocrites--telling ourselves that by lying, we are having faith, and that if we lie enough, the bad things will fade away, like a dream upon awakening.

"But in this we miss the whole point of the incarnation! God became flesh in Jesus Christ. Jesus faced temptation. He suffered hunger, and thirst, He suffered the agony of crucifixion. Jesus our God did not suffer these things so that we would be exempt from them, He faced these things so that we would have dignity in them....

"The people of this world believe in the power of positive thinking and in happiness, and in believing in these things, they are very shrewd. For people of this world have only this present moment , and if they are unhappy in it, they have lost something. But we who are Christians can endure unhappiness and sadness and loneliness and backstabbing and betrayal and friendlessness and poverty and hunger and thirst; we can face mourning and grief and even death, because Jesus faced all these things. As Christians, we know that Jesus' suffering was His way to glory, and His Crucifixion was the door to His Resurrection. We know that He ascended on high and sits, alive and well, at the right hand of His Father, where He rules over all things. We can face our own crucifixions in life, because we know we will share in His Resurrection on the Last Day!*"

To read the whole article, click here. For more Lenten resources, click here.

*Copyright ©1995-2008 by the Rev. Kenneth W. Collins. Reprinted with permission.


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