“Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. But John tried to talk him out of it. “I am the one who needs to be baptized by you,” he said, “so why are you coming to me?””
Matthew 3:13-14 NLT
Today we prepare to begin our Lenten journey towards Easter.
The word “Lent” comes from the Old English meaning “spring”. It is related to the word “lengthen” and refers to the lengthening of days that accompany the spring season. It reminds us that our journey through Lent should increasingly throw greater light upon our understanding and appreciation of the work of God in creation generally and our lives specifically. Lent is a season to engage with God in our own personal circumstances.
In the Anglican tradition, we are to reflect upon our own baptism and baptismal promises where we promised to resist the devil, an action that is our response to God’s promise of loving acceptance, as well as yield to God in all things (James 4:7-10). Lent offers me the opportunity to take my time to reflect upon how well I’ve managed to fulfil my baptismal promises over the past year. As I reflect, God will draw my attention to what he is speaking to me about. Light is thrown on where I’ve come from.
Lent is also an opportunity to lighten the load I carry through bringing to God in repentance those repeating behaviours that have proved unsuccessful in resisting. Confession is the method I use to acknowledge my human frailty to God (1 John 1:9). It consists of the debris that accumulates as a result of my human fracture. My temptation is always to bury and ignore it. But I’m invited to place it in God’s dustbin. Easter’s a reminder that God has done the heavy lifting through Jesus. My rubbish is carried away.
Make a plan to create space for God and, write a short agenda for that time.
Lord, I am reminded in baptism that you have cleansed me from sin and raised me to life with you. Thank you.