The pause within Lent

Reading for Feb. 18, 2018

Ps. 63, 98, 103
Dan. 9:3-10
Heb. 2:10-18
John 12:44-50

The 40 days of Lent do not count Sundays. Sundays are like “mini-Easters.” After a week like this week (and we’re talking just from Ash Wednesday) a “mini-Easter” is welcome. It is also hard to focus for me.

I am weary from the tragedy of the high school shooting in Florida and the ensuing arguments. It will continue to grip my heart how, as a whole, we as American believers are so blinded to the gods of this culture and the idols to which we cling rather than to Christ.

The reading this Sunday makes me aware of my own self-righteousness, though. The prayer in Daniel 9 is a prayer of repentance. I don’t pray it as a prayer for “America.” I pray it as a prayer for the American church. The power of Daniel’s prayer is he puts himself in the category of needing repentance. His faults may not have been the same as the rest of the nation that got them sent into captivity, but he owns his own need for repentance.

His prayer exposes my own self-righteousness.

But it is also a day of worship. The psalms given for reading today are about rejoicing. They are about trust.

Today is a day to step back and just breathe. Breathe in the goodness of God. Breathe in his compassion and mercy. Sundays help us through this time of Lent.



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