Is it just me, or does Lent seem to creep up on you each year? It’s Ash Wednesday already! If you haven’t yet figured out what to do this Lenten season, today would be a good time to pray about that. Some great ideas come right from Jesus in today’s Gospel reading. Almsgiving, prayer and fasting are what Jesus is talking about – the three pillars of Lent.
Giving things up and taking things on are great spiritual workouts for us. The Church gives us these forty days to work on the fundamentals, just like you would in any worth endeavor. And I would say that our walk with Christ is a worthy endeavor, wouldn’t you?
I think the crux of Lent is summed up well in the first sentence of today’s first reading from Joel 2. “Even now, says the LORD, return to me with your whole heart, with fasting, and weeping, and mourning; Rend your hearts, not your garments, and return to the LORD, your God.” You see, it doesn’t matter how near or far you may be from God today. You can always get closer. He’s waiting with open arms.
Father, we pray that our Lenten journey that begins today will draw us ever closer to you. Give us the strength and perseverance we need during these blessed forty days. Amen.
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