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What is Lent?

downloadAccording to Wikipedia, “Lent is a solemn religious observance in the liturgical calendar that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends approximately six weeks later, before Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, doing penance, repentance of sins, almsgiving, atonement and self-denial. This event is observed in the Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, Methodist, and Roman Catholic Churches.”

UMC Topics adds: “During Lent, we enter into a season of preparation, self-reflection and repentance when we seek to literally ‘turn around’ and realign our lives and focus toward God. It is a time to give up things as well as take on new life-giving practices, helping us rid ourselves of distractions and our own selfish desires. By doing so, we seek to live and love as more faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.”

Sometimes we find ourselves wondering if such religious observances are necessary. As Christians, aren’t we expected to live our lives in daily communion with Christ? However, when we soberly examine ourselves, we quickly realize that God occupies a very little portion of our thoughts. Preoccupied with our daily busyness, we don’t leave much room for God in our lives.

The word Lent comes from the word Lenten, meaning “spring season.” Hence, Lent provides us with the opportunity to spring-clean the clutter of thoughts and life patterns that are centered around “me” in order to make room for Jesus, the greatest king one can ever hope for.

Submitted by Charlie P.

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