Thinking About Lent
What spurs people to action? Whether making a purchasing decision or motivating a team of people on a project. Some call it a switch, others a shift, whichever there is something that prompts individuals to action. One thing is for sure; we shouldn't leave it to chance.
Simon Sinek, a leadership specialist, claims when a leader leads with "Why," there is an appearance of a highway or even bridge between the heart and mind that allows resources and priorities to be aligned. So, the "Why" from the leader is the switch, the shift. If this is true about work, can it also be true for Worship? I believe so.
The Holy Spirit is not the "What" or the "How" of Spirit-Inspired Worship; it is the "Why!"
See Psalm 47:1-2 "Come, everyone! Clap your hands! Shout to God with joyful praise! For the Lord Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth." Did you see it? It is simple to miss. One word—"for"—captures why we worship. (The Hebrew word, kî, which means "for," is even shorter.) So,
we do not worship God because we understand or arrive at that conclusion. We worship because we are prompted to it, we are made "For" Worship, and God did not leave it to chance.
We worship God because God invites us, sustains us, and allows us to worship God. See 1 Corinthians 2:10 (NLT) "But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. His Spirit searches out everything and shows us God's deep secrets." So, in this current season of Epiphany and coming "Lent" season, may we remember not to obfuscate things or, worst, try to control them; keep it simple. Be open to the prompts of the Holy Spirit, and Worship On! Show up to Church, and watch God show-up because we gather in God's name.
We realize that "Lent" doesn't begin until Wed, Feb 22, 2023, but it will be good for us to begin talking about Lent because it gives the glory to God when we gather... and not only do we worship as a community, but we also make plans as a family.
While Advent and Epiphany are celebrations and seasons of great anticipation, Lent is more frequently seen as a time of solemn observance and preparation for the celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus at Easter.
From its start on Ash Wednesday until its conclusion on Easter Sunday, Lent has been a traditional time for fasting, giving something up, or abstinence. Just as we carefully prepare for events in our personal lives, such as weddings or birthdays, a commencement Lent invites us to make our minds and hearts ready to remember Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.