“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)
It seems like I’ve just put the Christmas decorations back in the boxes for another year and here we are just about to enter the season of Lent. Lent is such an important part for the Christian yearly spiritual journey; it is the time when we examine our hearts and “clean house.” A time when we seek to connect with the God of grace. A time we have the opportunity to come face to face with Jesus; who not just confronts, but forgives, reconciles, and makes new. The God who came to earth in Jesus had the goal not to condemn but to save. Lent is a journey to new life!
I came across this quote from Henry Nowen:
Our temptation in Lent is to be so impressed by our sins and failings and so overwhelmed by our lack of generosity that we get stuck in a paralyzing guilt, a guilt that leads to introspection instead of directing our eyes to God. It is a guilt that becomes an idol and form of pride.
But Lent is precisely the time to break down this idol and to direct our attention to our loving Lord. The question is: “Are we like Judas, who was so overcome by his sin that he could not believe in God’s mercy any longer and hanged himself? Or are we like Peter, who returned to his Lord with repentance…?”
Dr. Nowen ends by reminding us that the ashes on Ash Wednesday are both a solemn reminder and an invitation to renewal. So, as we begin this time of self-examination, let us remember where the Lenten journey ends. It ends in a victory and an empty tomb! It ends with the fulfillment of the promise of new life! So let us walk together this Lent that the “One who makes all things new” may raise new life in us!
All God’s Blessings,