The Morse Family

Beyond Me

Beyond Me

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

on Lent

i have a certain amount of hesitancy with the popular idea of lent.  all of my favorite bloggers out there are blogging about it..I decided, instead of posting the same comment 5 times, I would ponder here.

I was raised Catholic.  I practiced lent from the time I was a young child.  Eating only fish on Fridays ...and then also giving up something I loved for a certain amount of time...grumbling about how hard it was...praying for the Lord to give me the strength to endure the certain sacrifice.  Counting the days until Easter when I would eat it, do it, or pick it back up again in abundance...when I wouldn't have to order the fish sandwich on Fridays when I would forget and go out to eat at McD's.  If I didn't participate in the Lenten season, I wouldn't talk about it...would feel less catholic..less committed...and a thick fog of catholic guilt.

Since I came to know Christ, a gradual but dynamic thing has happened.  I have realized that my salvation is not about me..not about what I do or don't do..not about how many quiet times I have or don't have..not about how much I pray or don't pray...Christ died and rose for me...a filthy, dirty sinner...anything pure or good or right in my life is not me, but totally God.  He did this in order that I may have a relationship with Him that is active and real..a relationship where I continually notice my insufficiency and continually fall into His sufficiency...Second by second repentance..second by second needing Him to cover me with His forgiveness and love.  It is a hard walk of allowing Him to remove all of the stuff that is not Him and replacing it with His character that is Galatians 5:22 (But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!)  This walk is all encompassing, all inclusive, and completely life changing...all of the time.  Not just for a season..and certainly not for us to do something for Him...He doesn't need our sacrifice...His sacrifice was completely sufficient and gave us the ability to now have this relationship with Him that was otherwise impossible...

26 Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 27 Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. 28 For the law appoints as high priests men in all their weakness; but the oath, which came after the law, appointed the Son, who has been made perfect forever. Hebrews 7:26-28 

4 Surely he took up our pain 
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.  Isaiah 53:4-6

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