By way of Christ’s suffering God became real to me. His human-ness, his longing for life and his longing to help and love others draws me to him. I think sometimes it is easy to shrug off, so to speak, Christ’s God-ness. It is a given right? His Divine nature, the Alpha and Omega in all his glory seems somehow more familiar to one who grew up in a Christian home. It is hard to wrap my head around is this man who is able to sympathize with my weakness, my so very fragile attempts to be good for him. He, as a human being sees my offerings that fall so short compared to what He offers and gives so freely.
One tradition of Lent encourages us to “give up” something for forty days. I was not raised with this tradition so it interests me to hear people say they will give up candy, soda, or a certain food or activity for the Lenten season. This action has caused me to ponder the suffering of Jesus. I have concluded, not for others, but for myself that any offering I make seems so small in comparison to Jesus, who gave up his God-ness and put on human flesh only to have his Father God turn his face away while he bore all the sin for the entire world. Somehow giving up candy or something else seems absurd but I understand why people want to do it. I understand that because they love Jesus they want to honor him in some way even if it seems silly or small. I certainly am not belittling this tradition or the act of giving up something for Lent.
The Lenten season is about honoring the sacrifice Jesus made for me. It is a time to reflect upon whom Jesus is and what he has done for us as well as contemplate our own Christian character or lack of it. Lent should not be a legalistic or showy event. What you give up or don’t give up is between you and God because we who are believers already know there is NOTHING we can give up or do that is worthy of the sacrifice Jesus made for us.
So for me this Lenten season, I continue to reflect on that fact that “once I was blind but now I see” and I am going to reflect and adore the ONE who took my sin and death and gave me life.