As Lent came around this year, I really had no intention of giving anything up. Not that I wasn’t interested, but I didn’t have any ideas on what to do. However, on Monday I had a conversation with God and to my surprise HE gave me an idea!
It went something like this…. “Should I give something up for you, God?” His answer was a resounding, “Yes, Meg. You should give up alcohol.” WHAT?!?!?! No wine, no cocktail and no hot toddy on a cold winter’s night? That kinda stinks.
The more I thought about this conversation, the more I realized what a perfect opportunity it was to sacrifice something I really enjoy…but it must be given up cheerfully!!! And that, my friends, is what it is all about.
For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6
Obviously, God does not require sacrifice…woohoo! The thing is though, sacrifice is one way we can show God that we love Him! Giving up something for six weeks just for HIM shouldn’t be that be of a stretch!
Moreover, Lent shouldn’t be the only time we SHOW God how much we love Him. It should be evident in our daily life…our words, our actions, our thoughts. Sigh.
Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God. Hebrews 13:16
Lent is the season where we prepare our hearts to commemorate the death and resurrection of Christ. It’s the celebration of Jesus’s sacrifice that He made specifically for each one of us. How fortunate are we?!?!
It is also a great opportunity to figure out what needs to change in our lives for us to grow closer to Him every other day of the year.
Each of us has our own demons we face, but Jesus Christ offers a helping hand to get through this life with hope, joy and peace…even in the worst of times.
Regardless of whether you give something up this Lent, take some time to figure out what actions you can take to spread the love of Christ and make His sacrifice add purpose to your life.
The key is to give your time, money and attention JOYFULLY. If we aren’t excited to offer our gifts, we are really just missing the point. A great way to get happy about sacrifice or giving of ourselves is to pray for God to give us His desires and to tame our own!!!
A few ideas to add into our daily lives that would glorify God and His Son, Jesus Christ, might include:
- Use our gifts to further God’s kingdom. This list is long and could be anything.
- Be kind – even when we don’t want to be.
- Tame our tongue. Stop the gossip or hasty words.
- Keep our anger in check. Be slow to anger and ask God to change our hearts.
- Pay it forward. Buy the next person in line a coffee or take a coffee to the beggar on the street corner.
- Be generous. Give much and give often. Make a conscious decision to give more than last year and think of ways to do this.
- Stop grumbling. Whenever a complaint comes up or out think about something to be thankful for.
- Create a prayer journal and USE IT DAILY. Talking to God helps us grow closer to Him. Plus, we can then look back and see His Hand working in our lives. (Trust me, I’ve been doing this for a week and I ALREADY see His Miracles!!!!)
- Be quiet and LISTEN. Watch for God’s Will in every facet of life. Take time to just BE with God.
- Take action. It doesn’t matter what it is, but DO SOMETHING! We will never honor God if we don’t actually follow Him, which indicates we have to get up and GO.
But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
God loves us. We are His creation and His children.
What can you do to show God you love Him?
Some Wisdom for Today: Proverbs 21:3 – To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.