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Journey Through Lent
During the weeks leading up to Easter, we’ll explore passages of Scripture that remind us of why Jesus came, what his ministry was about, and why he died on the Cross.
Lenten Reading Plans:
If you would like to read your Bible daily and journey with others in the Beale family towards Easter, click this link for Lectionary based readings: https://lectionary.library.vanderbilt.edu/daily.php?year=B
Also, feel free to download the Beale Daily Lenten Bible Reading Plan, adapted from the American Bible Society.Lenten Daily Reading Plan
This article about Lent originally appeared on CrossWalk.com and was authored by CrossWalk contributing author, Sarah Phillips.
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And he fasted forty days and forty nights, and afterward he was hungry. Matthew 4:1-2
What is Lent – A Time Set Aside
Just as we set aside time to spiritually prepare for Christmas Day, it makes sense to set aside time to prepare for the two most important days of the Christian year. Lent is a time that offers us an opportunity to come to terms with the human condition we may spend the rest of the year running from and it brings our need for a Savior to the forefront. Like Advent, Lent is a time to open the doors of our hearts a little wider and understand our Lord a little deeper, so that when Good Friday and eventually Easter comes, it is not just another day at church but an opportunity to receive the overflowing of graces God has to offer.
But unlike the childlike joy associated with the season of Advent, with it’s eager anticipation of the precious baby Jesus, Lent is an intensely penitential time as we examine our sinful natures and return to the God we have, through our own rebelliousness, hurt time and again. Lent is also an opportunity to contemplate what our Lord really did for us on the Cross – and it wasn’t pretty. But ultimately, the purpose of Lent does not stop at sadness and despair – it points us to the hope of the Resurrection and the day when every tear will be dried (Rev. 21:3).
And about three o’clock Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:33-49
Although the nature of suffering is not one that offers itself to easy explanations or pat answers, the answers we seek seem to make the most sense in light of the Cross. There is nothing in the world – no religion, philosophy, or material comfort – that offers such a powerful answer to life’s toughest questions as the two slabs of wood on which our Savior died. Although I was drawn to Christianity in search of joy, it’s the Cross that keeps me coming back day after day, year after year. It is this time of year, known as Lent, that I am reminded of what Jesus did for me.
When I look into the eyes of our suffering God, I’m in aw…