This month we’re asked to answer the question “What do Lent and the death and resurrection of Christ mean to you?”
I come from a tradition that doesn’t observe Lent, though I have personally observed it a few times. More important to me is the remembrance of Christ’s death and resurrection, which give me hope for a future spent with Him.
When you have a prodigal child, as I do, it gives new perspective on your relationship with God. This season is certainly drawing me closer to Him, recognizing my dependence on Him and on His goodness. I have pressed more closely into prayer, into Scripture reading, into praise. That last – praise – may surprise you since my circumstances (the spiritual condition of one who is precious to me) are not favourable. But we are told to give thanks in all things and I thank God for who He is.
What is the character of God? He is love, mercy, forgiveness, grace. He is holy. He judges all things righteously and perfectly. He made the earth and everything in it. Everything that breathes He loves and cares for – especially people, who are made in His image. He loves my child more deeply and well than I ever could. He is a keeper of promises. He is provider, healer, and more, so I can trust Him as He works in the life of my child, that He pursues lost sheep, redeems and restores.
The story of the prodigal, an exaggeration as parables are, provides a marvelous example of roles we all play, or may play. As one-time prodigals ourselves we can identify with the son who has wandered away and turned his back on the right path. As parents we can identify with the father who lovingly gives the child what he wants and lets life be the difficult teacher. The father prays, waits and watches. I love this song by Rich Mullins on the theme:
As I reflect on Easter and the work Christ did on the cross, I’m reminded that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. That means I too have missed the mark. I was just as guilty as anyone and in need of a Saviour. Thank God, for providing the Way back to Him!
I am posting this later in the day than I planned on. Suddenly it was April 4th and I didn’t have my piece completed. Perhaps that’s just as well, for it allows me to end with this familiar song sung by Celtic Woman, a rendition I only heard tonight. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. How very sweet indeed.
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