I know many in my circle wouldn’t know Ash Wednesday from Waffle Wednesday but this day marks the start of Lent (again one of those foreign concepts to many). Why is this important? It is a time set aside for Christians to pray, fast, and reflect on their life and need for repentance and forgiveness. Lent ends when Easter comes, as the church celebrates the resurrection of our Lord and Savior.
The following, from the Book of Common Prayer, struck me as deeply powerful.
“This season of Lent provided a time in which converts to the faith were prepared for Holy Baptism. It was also a time when those who, because of
notorious sins, had been separated from the body of the faithful
were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness, and restored to
the fellowship of the Church.”
Did you catch that? Those who have been “separated from the fellowship” because of their own sin are “reconciled by penitence and forgiveness,” and “restored to the fellowship of the Church.” Maybe you have been cut off from the church through your own choices or the wrong of others. Let Lent be a time of restoration and reconciliation. Those of us who are in the church, lets focus on these high goals and leave the ephemeral and superficial of society to others. I am grateful for Lent and what it reminds me of and what it convicts me of.