Daily Devotional February 3, 2021

Daily Devotional February 3, 2021

Believe it or not, Lent is right around the corner.  Ash Wednesday is February 17.   I am not a fan.

I hate Lent.  Any normal person should.

Adam, our praise team leader, loves Lent.  That tells you all you need to know about Adam.

There are two reasons I don’t like Lent.

First, Lent is a time for introspection.  I don’t like looking at my endless flaws and sins.  I’d much rather stand at the pulpit and look at the congregation’s.  But Lent forces me to identify and examine the many ways I intentionally put God in the back seat rather than the driver’s seat.

Second, as a Lenten discipline, I always give something up.  But because I am very shallow, I don’t like to give up anything of consequence.  It goes against my extreme sense of entitlement.

One Lent, I gave up vegetables.  Shannon overrode my decision.

One Lent, I gave up caffeine.  That’s when I noticed that Shannon seemed to be going out of her way to get on my nerves.  While she said I was going to caffeine withdrawal, I think she was just being mean.

One Lent, instead of giving something up, I took on an additional discipline.  Every morning, I read some of Paul Tillich’s writings.   My brain exploded.  I still haven’t fully recovered.

But now that I’ve had a moment to think about it, Lent is necessary.  It’s walking through the darkness into the light.  It is intentionally choosing to examine and address my continual bent to put me first and God second.  It is a necessary part of being a mature Christian.

I hope you will join me this year in observing a Lenten discipline, examining your words, conduct, and thoughts, and intentionally choosing to be a better version of yourself.   While it won’t always be pretty, the holy habits we form during Lent can help us become the people God created us to be.  It’s a good deal.

This is exactly what Peter meant by saying,  “Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind.   Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” (1 Peter 2:1-3)

Lent is two weeks away.  You have plenty of time to figure out how you are going to make this year’s Lent especially meaningful.  I hope you will. 

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, open my eyes that I may truly see.  Open my ears that I may truly hear.  Open my mind that I may truly understand.  Show me your path.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

At 6:30 on February 17, our youth will lead the Ash Wednesday service.  I hope you will be there.  It matters.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.

Tom Robbins