The Season Of Lent: What it is, Why we do it & How you can get involved?
The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, penance, repentance of sins, almsgiving, atonement and self-denial. Its institutional purpose is heightened in the annual commemoration of Holy Week, marking the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the tradition and events of the New Testament beginning on Friday of Sorrows, further climaxing on Jesus’ crucifixion on Good Friday, which ultimately culminates in the joyful celebration on Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. (Source: Wikipedia)
What We Are Doing
Captain America and I will be turning off our TV for the 40 days! We have developed a habit of watching far too much TV, so after praying about it we both felt like this is something we should reduce. Instead we will be focussing our time on each other, reading and studying God’s Word and reading the pile of Christian books we have but claim we “never have time to read”. I will also be reading along with the ladies from She Reads Truth with their Lent Study.
But Isn’t Lent Just For Catholics?
Lent is not specifically Catholic, although it is often practiced by Catholic people. I am not Catholic and I have never been Catholic but I was raised in a church which acknowledged and recognized Lent as a season in which to give something up and/or take something up for 40 days before Easter.
It’s a Spiritual Discipline: A Biblical Foundation
I believe it is about developing spiritual discipline and focussing our hearts and minds on Jesus Christ as we prepare ourselves to celebrate His resurrection. It is also in recognition of Jesus’ 40 days in the wilderness, where he fasted and was tested and tempted.
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. (Matt 4:1-2)
Jesus did this to prepare himself for the ministry he was called to by God and Lent is an opportunity for us to prepare ourselves for what God is calling us to as well.
So how do we do this?
The good news is we are not expected to find a local desert and survive on just sand for 40 days! Jesus is the only one asked to do this, Praise God! However, there are a variety of excellent devotionals and resources out there to help you focus on what matters-and not just concentrate on what you are giving up
Thanks to some wonderful recommendations from my fellow blogging friends – here is some material you may find useful:
I haven’t personally read this but it was recommended by MANY blogging friends! So I contacted Kris, the author.
Here is a little more about Kris:
As a sequin-wearing, homeschooling mother of four, Kris is passionate about Jesus, people and words. Her heart beats to share the hard, but glorious truth about life in Christ. She’s been known to take gratuitous pictures of her culinary creations, causing mouths to water all across Instagram. Once upon a time, she ran 10 miles for Compassion International, a ministry for which she serves as an advocate. You can read more of her heart-words in her new book, Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement, and on her blog kriscamealy.com.
The Trail to the Tree by Ann Voskamp.
Lent Reflective Journal by Jessi Connolly
I am a HUGE FAN of this lady, Jessi at Naptime Diaries, she creates beautiful printables, notecards, and has even done an Advent Calendar, now she has produced this Lent Reflective Journal for just $18
Bread & Wine, a compilation of teachings and studies from various authors old and new
Alternatively, here are some other devotionals of varying types.
Not a fan of devotionals?
Something a little different, check out 40acts: Do Lent Generously
Watch this short video to find out more about the movement:
Whatever you think about Lent, whether it is new to you or something you implement every year I hope this post was inspiring and helpful.
How are you preparing your heart for this coming Resurrection season?