Fired by love's urgent longings, I am his rocketman.
Three Things To Do For Lent

Three Things To Do For Lent

JUMPING FOR JOY

Ahhh, Lent is finally here.  You know it’s my favorite time of the year, well not exactly.  I have already gone on record that Christmas is my favorite.  But, I suppose this year, I am looking forward to Lent, sort of.

Here are some thoughts I typically associate with Lent.

“Remember O man that you are dust and unto dust you shall return”  (See why it’s such an exciting time of he year!)

“Even now”, declares the Lord, “Return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” (Joel 2:12)

“Return … to the Lord your God … I will heal [your] waywardness and love [you] freely, for my anger has turned away from [you]”.  (Hosea 14:1,4)

Generally, I think most of us, in one form or another, think of Lent as a solemn time where we give up things for God.  We don’t always see the connection between our sacrifice and God’s happiness, but we have at least a vague sense that they go together.

So typically, every Lent as we approach Ash Wednesday, we ask one another, “what are you giving up for Lent?”

But not this year; nope not this year; this year, this man is going to do something radically different.

For 40 days and 40 nights I am going to offer to God three sacrifices:

A sacrifice of thanksgiving!

A sacrifice of praise! and

A sacrifice of joy!  

I mean it, this is what I am going to do and you can’t stop me.

Thanksgiving

“The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!”  (Psalm 50:23)

“In every circumstance give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

Praise

“Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise — the fruit of lips that confess his name.”  (Hebrews 13: 14-16)

“The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the Lord of hosts:  for the Lord is good; for his mercy lasts forever:  and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord … ”  (Jeremiah 33:10-12)

Joy

“And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; therefore, I will offer sacrifices of joy in his tent; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.”  (Psalm 27:6)

“This day is sacred to our Lord.  Do not be sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”  (Nehemiah 8:10)

“This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.”  (Psalm 118:24)

So when people ask me,”What are you giving up for Lent?”, I am going to tell them, “I have decided to  give up ingratitude, complaining, bitching, moaning, criticizing, fussing, slighting, pouting, self pity and just generally feeling bad about things.”

Hey, I know I am giving up a lot …

And I know this is radical stuff …

But, I would really like to try something new.

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Comments

  1. Just what I need! I’ve heard it said that if you do something for 30 days in a row, it becomes a habit. Boy, do I need to change my habits! Thank you.
    Gingerfoot

  2. Thank you for your comment. I think hope is the virtue that makes it possible to offer thanks, praise and joy when the circumstances of our lives speak something else to us. We should pray for a spirit of wisdom and revelation so that the eyes of hearts may be opened to see the hope to which we have been called, our glorious inheritance in the saints and his immeasurable power at work in us who believe.

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