Sisters in Spirit is a series of essays by a group of women who felt a spiritual perspective lacking from the steady stream of daily news. They each agreed to carve space monthly on their blogs for a spiritual conversation. The topic this month is: why is Lent important?
Lent, the 40 days prior to Easter, is a spiritually significant time for Christians. This period symbolizes the 40 days Jesus spent wandering the desert, fasting, prior to his crucifixion. The devil came to Jesus at this time and offered Him everything if He would give up on God. But of course, Jesus wouldn’t budge.
Jesus would later scream to from the cross, while writhing in pain, wondering why God had forsaken and forgotten Him. Where was His father during His time of great need?
That part can be a little confusing. If He knew this was a part of God’s plan, and He would rise again in three days (Easter), why would He cry out from the cross, wondering where God had gone?
I certainly don’t have any answers, other than I cannot imagine how scared Jesus was. I find Lent important because it provides a specific time frame to be focused on God, and to wander my own metaphoric desert. It’s less “what am I giving up for Lent” and more “what can I do differently during this time that will make my spiritual life richer.”
I know I’m called to be kind, to try to understand others, and to relinquish any idea that I can understand God’s plan. During the last few months, I’ve felt forsaken. This empty feeling, when your convinced your prayers are unanswered and you are being punished, creates the darkest of days.
What is there to do when you feel God has abandoned you?
I can’t imagine Jesus’ pain, or confusion when wandering the desert. How sad he must have been to have felt forgotten. How tempting the devil’s offer was. And yet, he pushed forward. We are called to do the same.
I’m thankful for Lent. It gives me time to reconcile those aspects of my life that aren’t in order with God’s word and to work at being closer to Him. I am hopeful that by Easter, this unhappy time is behind me.
Feb 26: Proverbs 10:17 “He who needs discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.”
I hope you continue this conversation by reading and commenting other perspectives on Christianity with my other Sisters in Spirit. Become part of the conversation:
Sarah is municipal attorney, mom to a toddler boy, and United Methodist’s pastor’s wife. (She does not play the organ.) She is a life-long Missouri girl with a heart for hospitality and social justice. Sarah enjoys cooking, running, knitting and embroidery, reading, and playing in the sprinkler. Sarah blogs at www.beautyschooldropout.net
Bianca is a newlywed Navy wife from the great state of Texas (where she coincidentally currently resides), and she and her husband are expecting their first child in late summer. She has a passion for serving others, asking hard questions and sharing The Gospel with both her words and actions. Bianca loves Jesus, her hubs, authentic friendships, traveling, making lists of all kinds, and trying new recipes which she blogs about on BecomingBianca.com.