This coming Wednesday is Ash Wednesday.
From “Preparing My Heart For Easter” by Ann Marie Stewart:
“It’s the 7th Wednesday or 46 days prior to Easter and marks the beginning of Lent which focuses on our need for forgiveness and salvation. ‘Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation’ (Luke 11:4).
“….slow down and focus on Jesus.”
“What is the significance of Lent?” “When we think of Lent, the following words come to mind: penitence, reflection, suffering, death and resurrection, prayer, fasting, discipline, study, contemplation, preparation, introspection, self-examination, repentance, and retreat. The forty days of Lent begin with Ash Wednesday and end with …Easter, subtracting all Sundays, which instead celebrate the resurrection. The number forty is representative of Jesus’ forth days alone in the wilderness to prepare Him for His own spiritual journey. You, too, can have forty days to prepare for Easter. This may mean turning away from certain sinful behaviors and returning to God.” “Why give up something for Lent? Perhaps it will help you share in His sufferings. Maybe the discipline will help you focus on Him. It may help you experience sorrow over your sin and what it cost the Messiah. It may help you realize that God is ultimately in control, not belongings, desires, or habits.” “Both giving up something for Lent and adding devotion to our lives help our hearts focus on Him throughout this season.” “As you come closer to Jesus, learn by His example how to respond to the world around you. Be a blessing to others.”
Will you join me in 40 days of preparing our hearts for Easter? What will you choose to give up? God has been and is working with me on things like negativity, low self-esteem, impatience with others, humility, rejection, doubts, fears, unbelief, and worry. What will we choose to give up for Lent?