i'm no longer going through the planning and getting married season. i'm almost done with the school season (thank you Jesus). so now on to the next season.
i haven't really figured out what this season is going to be, but i can tell you that it's going to include big things for the Lord from me.
it's going to include me taking a journey in discovering true surrender to God to fully be found in His salvation.
and so this morning when i started to read a couple blogs on lent (great blogs) i started to think about lent in general.
it should be pointed out that most importantly, lent isn't really in the bible.
yes, there is the 40 days where Jesus is tempted by satan (matthew 4). but as far as an Ash Wednesday and not eating meat on certain days, and giving something up...it's no where to be found.
as i searched my bible this morning and came up with nothing, that looming question popped up into my head.
if it's not in the bible...than is it really biblical?
it's a really hard core thought. but really think about it.
if it's not in the bible than where did it come from?
the answer: man.
so again i ask, is lent really biblical?
if this whole 40 days was made up by some one, where is God in all of it?
if someone decided that 40 days of giving up coffee would bring you closer to God, what was his thought process?
i may have lost half my readers by now, but stay with me.
the idea of lent is based of Jesus fasting for 40 days in the wilderness.
for 40 days Jesus did nothing but spend time with His Father in heaven. praying for all the hours of a day, giving thanks, asking for strength...all the while being tempted by satan.
so how is lent today anything like that?
no, Jesus didn't have a job, or a family to come home and cook dinner for, or classes to attend. but even if we did those things in our life that we can't just give up for 40 days, we could still give up everything else.
He didn't get up on that mountain top and keep all his fruits and veggies. He didn't keep His iphone because He gave up His computer. He didn't keep a pop because He gave up coffee. He didn't just go up there once a week to find some quite...He fasted, everything in His life, for 40 days.
and people brag about giving up sweets.
i should inject here, that last year i gave up facebook and touted about it. and pop the year before.
when you practice some appetite-denying discipline to better concentrate on God, don't make a production out of it. it might turn you into a small time celebrity but it won't make you a saint. if you 'go into trining' inwardly, act normal outwardly. God doesn't require attention getting devices. He won't overlook what you are doing; He'll reward you well.
matthew 6:16-18 MSG
so when we fast from something...it's between us and God. not for the world to know.
which, last time i checked, blogging and tweeting about what we give up is making us look like small time celebrities.
my point is that what we're giving up, facebook/coffee/sweets/meat doesn't mean anything to God. because whether we like to be honest or not...we're just going to fill it with something else.
more tv or more pop. more gossiping friends. more complaining because you're hungry.
i worry because what lent might have meant at the beginning has been twisted into a 40 days to see who can go with out the biggest thing. like it's a competition.
just because we've given something up, doesn't mean it's glorifying God.
the point to fasting is surrendering the big things so you can depend on God.
it's fasting like Jesus did.
i understand that the idea behind lent is to give up things you have daily, and so when you want those things you go to God...but do you? in the middle of the day, when you really need that cup of coffee are you going to God in prayer no matter where you are, or are you just going to be grumpy?
i'm skeptical of lent because it's man made.
fasting on the other hand, so biblical and so powerful when you put your heart into it.
so what's my point with all of this? certainly not to bash anyone participating in lent, but just to raise some questions.
to point out that yes, it's not in the bible and was man made.
and to ask if you're giving something up, is it really something that will draw you closer to God?
Jesus fasted by giving up everything.
that should be our starting point.
i'm not giving anything up for lent, because i'm entering into this new season of my life
gaining more of Jesus.
john 3:30 He must become greater; I must become less.