Got plans for Lent?
Probably not. Not all Christians pay much attention to this religious season in the Christian calendar.
Lent refers to the 40 days, 46 if you count the Sundays, prior to Easter. Lent starts with Ash Wednesday on which you will see people walking around with a strange black mark on their forehead.
The 40 days is a reference to the temptation of Jesus in the Wilderness which lasted 40 days. Lent is a time of repentance, fasting
Lent is meant to be a time of self-examination and reflection. In the early church, Lent was used to
How is Lent used? Fasting is what is generally associated with Lent. Often celebrants will give up some luxury during the 40 Days. This could include watching television, a luxury food like wine or chocolate or some other favorite.
The idea is to focus on Christ and repentance. The season is used to give greater focus to doing works of grace and kindness toward others. Here are some suggestions:
- Volunteering at a soup kitchen.
- Reading one’s Bible more and giving more time to prayer.
- Using the 40 days to evaluate certain portions of one’s life.
- Or donating money or time to an organization such as Compassion, Bread for the World, Heifer Project, etc.
Lent is a good opportunity to engage in self-reflection, recommitment, and acts of generosity. For even more ideas on this subject go to 40 Acts, a web resource devoted entirely to Lent.