Anyone know what Lent is all about?
In Christian tradition, Lent is the period of 40 days in the liturgical* year leading up to Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer for the annual commemoration* during Holy Week of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the events linked to the Passion of Christ and culminates in Easter, the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. This spiritual preparation is done through the following—prayer, penitence*, almsgiving* and self-denial*
*liturgical=a Christian action or discipline practiced throughout Church history (prayers, Scripture readings, fasting, etc)
*commemoration=to honor the memory of (in this case, the death and resurrection of Christ)
*almsgiving=giving money to the poor
*self-denial=showing restraint or limitations for one's desires or interests (often self-denial is in the form of a fast*)
*fasting=giving up some or all food or drink (or other consuming activity) for a period of time in order to refocus on God and offer prayer for a specific purpose.
One can fast from anything that takes up more time than it should or that is a very meaningful part of the day's activities. By abstaining from such an object or activity the goal is to be constantly reminded to be in prayer and in close communion with God.
For example, we have the 30 Hour Famine coming up. During those 30 hours we will abstain from solid foods in order to be reminded of those around the world who die each day from hunger--to pray for those people and be thankful for all we have and raise money from sponsors to help those who need it so desperately. We will also spend the time we would normally be eating serving those in our community and praying and worshipping.
So, hopefully, you understand Lent and fasting a little bit more (if not, if I totally confused you with all the big Christian-ese terms, please let me know. Ask away!)
Are you willing to give up one of your regular desires/activities for the next 40 days in order to focus more intently on the greatest encounter of human history--the death (crucifixion) and RESURRECTION of our Savior, Jesus Christ!?
Make your decision today. Lent begins tomorrow and goes through Easter Sunday.
What will it be? 40 days without meat? or fried foods? or sweets? or coffee? or a certain website or video game?