First Sunday of Lent

A girl came home from her church school and said, ‘Mum do you know what they’re giving up for Lent – chocolate! What’s the point of giving up chocolate? I want to do something more for Jesus.’ What is the point of Lent? Is it just about giving something up? What purpose does that serve? Do we just revert back to old habits once Easter comes? There is a Vicar of Dibley episode in which the vicar gives up chocolate for Lent, and then binges at the end. Of course, that is totally pointless. Lent has traditionally been used as a time to draw closer to Jesus in order to learn from him and become more like him. Giving things up links to the fast Jesus underwent when he was in the wilderness, a time that was full of purpose and the launch pad for his ministry. People do Lent differently today and there are all sorts of ideas available to make it meaningful. Whatever you do, make it count for others and for yourself. However, Lent is not so much about doing as being. How will you draw closer to God through Jesus Christ? How will you allow the Holy Spirit to work in you and change you, ready to be a follower and serve Jesus in everything? Take time in Lent to soak yourself in the gospels. If there is something that grabs your attention, reflect, meditate and pray so that the Holy Spirit can be at work. Don’t be too busy just to sit and be with Jesus.

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