Lent: Deconstructing into Wholeness
I never understood Lent. I never got it. I always thought Lent was some superstitious season where you give up chocolate so God will bless you. Not now. Not this year.
Covid has disrupted everything. We’re all in a low grade of depression at the least. We’re all suffering and grieving what was lost. I just lost my wife to cancer. I have stage 4 lung cancer. I'm going through deep grief. But I'm not alone. We’re all living in a time of deep social and spiritual upheaval. We’re all off autopilot, reassessing everything. I believe that we as a people, and as a nation are all in a season of Lent. Let's all wake up to it and learn what we need to learn how to be an anchor in the storm. A sanctuary of peace in the middle of the chaos.
What are we to do?
In your relationships with one another, have the same mind as Christ Jesus: Though he was God, he didn’t think of equality with God as something to grasp, rather, he emptied himself, taking the very nature of a servant, being born a human being. And being found in the form of a man, he humbled himself, becoming obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. ~ Philippians 2:5
Lent is the church season we die to ourselves, lament our loss, fast, pray, and give to be enabled to live a resurrected incarnational ‘Christ in us’ life. No one lives a resurrected life without dying daily.
Here are some observations I want to share with you. I hope they’ll stir your heart, and you’ll find them useful.
· Lent is a 40 day season dedicated to repentance, fasting, and prayer.
· Lent is the season of interior descent, examination, and reflection.
· Lent is forty days because Jesus was tested for forty days in the wilderness. It takes intentional time and focus to deconstruct our denial, pretense, and posturing.
· Lent is the season we die to our hopes, our dreams, and our agendas, to empty ourselves out that we might be filled with new life, see with new eyes, live with a whole heart, filled with God’s strength to live an abundant life.
· Lent is the season you come clean.
· Lent: It’s time to get real with God, to Fast, Pray, Weep, Morn…to let go and let God be God in our lives.
· Lent is the season where we might be laid bare to God’s grace, mercy, and light. We are naked before God.
· Lent is the church season dedicated to falling apart.
· Lent is the time we rip our clothes, throw the dust into the air, and cry, Oy Vey. We need to wake up from living
in a culture of denial. We all will die.
· Lent is dying before we die so that we might live.
· Lent is when we lay things down, to recover those things which should never have been forgotten.
· Lent is when we die to the spirit of this world, so we can plug into the Spirit of God.
· Lent is the season for cleaning out the springs of our heart.
· Lent is the season for spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical detox.
· Lent is the season to reboot.
· Lent is a trust fall into the arms of God.
· Lent is the divine interrupt you’ve been waiting for your whole life.
· Lent is deconstructing into wholeness.
What do you want to do?
We’ve been thrown together. Let’s journey together. We won't have all the answers, in fact, Lent isn’t about answers, or programs, or what we believe. It’s about deconstruction, falling apart, and being broken open that we might receive, and enter in.
Now may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us and abide in us, forevermore.
PS: We’ve set up a closed Facebook Group: The Spiritual Practice of Lent as a safe place to share more. Hope you’ll join us.
* Notes: Lent is a season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Lent comes from the Anglo-Saxon word lencten, which means “spring.” The forty days represent the time Jesus spent in the wilderness, enduring the temptation of Satan and preparing to begin his ministry.