The start of the Lenten Season is just around the corner, beginning Ash Wednesday, February 10, 2016.
We invite everyone who can to join us in this historical church practice to consider the distractions of life. What gets in the way of you connecting with Jesus and fellow believers? At Evangel, we encourage Lent participation in this way:
- fast (give up something),
- read Scripture using the online reading guide, and
- chat with us about your experience.
Sign up at the info desk to be part of the online forum. Contact Pastor Nate to if you have any questions.
What is Lent?
Lent stems from an early church practice. The focus is typically on sorrow for sin, prayer, fasting, and giving to the poor. Lent lasts forty days because of the biblical account of Jesus spending forty days in the wilderness fasting and praying before beginning his ministry. It actually covers a forty-six-day period, February 10 - March 24, but Sundays are not counted among the forty days because the resurrection is celebrated each Sunday.
Does the Bible tell us to practice Lent?
The answer is both yes and no. Let’s start with no: the word lent is never talked about in scripture; however, sorrow for sin, prayer, fasting, giving to the poor are major themes of Scripture. Lent is designed to help us grow in these spiritual disciplines—so technically no, but thematically yes.
What should I give up for Lent?
Usually thoughts turn to something a person really likes, maybe a delicious desert. No more ice cream. No candy until Easter. Good-bye, cake. It could be an activity or privilege, too. No TV or social media. When Jesus fasted, he had the power to turn rocks into bread, but he denied himself. Whatever you give up, it will help you understand Jesus, even if in a small way. The important thing is that as we fast we continually seek the Lord in prayer instead of breaking our fast. Our hope is that you will have a stronger focus on the One who took on Himself the burden of human nature and the weight of our sin and suffered for our sake, but rose in victory.
God will honor our attempts to focus on Him through Lent. To make the most of this time, sign-up to chat with your fellow Evangelites each day and let's ask God to show up in big ways to empower us to reach out to those who need our Savior's love this coming Easter.