The Start of Something New: Lent

I’m going to be honest. I have hardly ever participated in lent. And by participated, I mean fasted from something for lent. I didn’t grow up in a church where it was a requirement, and so, lent frequently passed me by.

However, yesterday, Ash Wednesday, I sat with my Bible open in front of me. But I wasn’t reading it. I had my phone in hand, and was instead, scrolling through Facebook.

I realized what was slowly becoming of my quiet time. I had begun to compromise. Quiet time was slowly becoming time to complete trivial tasks. And the once joyful sacrifice of my quiet time, was becoming something I did with an insincere heart.

Fasting

{I’m going to pause here. This is not to sound like I am disparaging myself. I do still spend time sincerely in the Word. But I have seen ways that I allow things to steal the focus away. And maybe you find yourself in the same circumstances. You desire to do something and you have been steadfast. But as time continues on, little things, reminders grab your attention. And you take but a minute to complete the task, but your heart. Oh your heart has moved along. You continue on in the Bible, but there is something different. And that difference, friend, is compromise. Compromise has entered your heart and it has altered your sacrifice.}

At that moment I knew what I needed to do. I needed a change. And this season of lent would be the perfect place for my heart to start. 

Bible Journal and coffee

This lent, I am beginning a fast from social media. In all honesty, I hope it is something that takes root, deep in my being.

The difficulty is that I spend some time here – with all of you. And I love it. So I will be around to share my posts and to reply to you all. But I won’t be there, in the background, searching and scrolling. I won’t be there commenting on pictures or posts. I won’t be there, in the recesses of my time and space, spending endless amounts of time.

Instead, I will be sitting at my kitchen counter, spending time with the Word. I will be reading and studying the Bible. I will be spending more time in prayer and journaling. And I will be spending more time with Him.

greece

The time once used for idleness, distraction, idolatry, and comparison is removed. And is being replaced with the One who is so much greater. 

Because that is what lent and fasting are really all about. They aren’t actions to be done, schedules to keep, rituals to practice.

No. Fasting and lent are about the position of our hearts. They are about our faith.

So often in the Bible, God chastises His people for their lack of faith. They practiced all the rituals. They brought sacrifices. They diligently checked each requirement off their list. Yet their hearts were missing. They didn’t practice His law, His covenant with a heart focused solely on Him. They practiced to be blessed. They practiced because it was what you did. It had become empty and meaningless.

And when aspects of God’s beautiful covenants have lost their meaning, when they are done with compromise and without a sincere heart – we are lost. We have become no different than the Old Testament Israelite’s…that were condemned.

greece travels
So this Lenten season, if you are fasting from something – ponder the posture of your heart.

Are you leveraging the removed items to draw you nearer to God? Are you giving up things that give you more time to spend with Him? Are you giving up resources that will cause you to trust more in Him? 

Because that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it:
Being pointed back towards Jesus.
Remembering Who He is.
Remembering what He has done.
Remembering His faithfulness.
Remembering His love.
Learning more about Him. About what He says. About what He wants for us. And from us. 

And leaning more on Him through it all. 

I would love to hear from you. Are you giving something up this Lent? Why or why not? If you are, how is it increasing your faith? I think we can learn so much from each other as we build each other up. (As always, and especially with discussions that may have some disagreement, remember, He is known by our love.) 

love to you

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2 thoughts on “The Start of Something New: Lent

  1. I’m going to be honest. I have never, ever, ever participated in lent in my ENTIRE life and would be hard pressed to give a really good explanation of it and I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Theology. Now how great is that??

    Non lent related, but I completely removed FB from my cell phone, deleted my blog FB page, and kicked 100 friends off my personal page (leaving me with around 25 family members) to eliminate the temptation of the distraction anymore. I too have lost focus in my life on what REALLY matters and as much as I love social media (I still have IG, a blog, and Twitter) I just needed to get rid of the biggest distractors. FB and Periscope.

    So my hugs to you as you enjoy your undivided time with Jesus, my friend. 🙂

    I love your heart.

    Like

    • I feel that same way! I have close to no idea about the reason behind lent. But fasting, I get. 🙂 I’ve had such great discipline with staying focused, but it’s been waning. Life keeps stealing focus – but not real life – those snippets of busyness that want all my attention for no reason!
      And it was the start of lent – so count me in for the fasting part of it! 😉 I am so encouraged by your story! I still have it all on my phone, but turned notifications off. But oh man, I catch myself trying to sneak peaks and then closing it right away. I have no idea when I got so bad about it.

      So thankful for your encouragement friend! 💛

      Like

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