Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Difference Between Lent and Lint

Lent is a time of preparation of our hearts for ministry and service.
Lint is what we find in our belly buttons when we are navel-gazing.

Pretty clear distinction.

The reason that I bring this up is because I think the two often get confused around this time of year.  As Christians set aside time for reflection and penance during the season of Lent, our practices run the risk of becoming more about navel-gazing and less about preparation for action.  Jesus spent 40 days in the desert preparing for his ministry on earth, which basically involved being with and among the poor, the downcast, the sinners, and the lonely; this was the beginning of Lent.  Lent these days gets boiled down to eating fish on Fridays and attending an extra worship service on Ash Wednesday.  It's so easy to miss the point.   

During the next 40 days, how are we preparing our hearts to be with the poor, the downcast, the sinners, and the lonely?  How are these times of reflection and prayer leading to the living ministry of Christ here on earth through us?  How will we prepare our hearts to love sacrificially, give generously, and live radically during this season? 

World Vision has a great way of bringing activists together this Lent in what they are calling Relentless Acts of Sacrifice.  This is just one opportunity.  This Lent, I am trying to conscientiously prepare my heart for service, solidarity, and action through these relentless acts of sacrifice, with the Mozambique Initiative at the forefront of my practice. Tell me about your practice.  How are you preparing for service during this Lenten season?

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