It is the season of Lent, leading up to Easter Sunday.
I love Easter even more than Christmas!
Christmas is a beginning, but Easter is a culmination! Easter is our saving grace!
Without Easter we would all be lost with no hope.
Traditionally, for Lent, people have given up something they like, as a form of fasting, a form of sacrificial worship. People give up a food they like for 40 days, perhaps chocolate or all dessert. Some people give up a favorite TV show, or give up Facebook for 40 days. Whatever a person gives up, it is a small nod to the great sacrifice Jesus gave for us, giving up His earthly life. The length of 40 days, mirrors the fast Jesus did in the wilderness after His baptism.
Although I have sometimes followed this tradition, giving up a favorite food each year, I have been searching for something more. What I want is to get closer to God during Lent. I want to prepare for Easter, so I am filled with joy and thanksgiving when I get there! I don’t want Easter to limp in, and it’s over before I realize it. Some years I have done a devotional, or Bible reading plan. Which was better, but I want to change my relationship with God, to a deeper one. I want to better understand what Jesus did for me.
So this year, I am reading a different kind of 40 day devotional. This one is targeted to change our relationship with God. This devotional seeks to make our relationship with God to be less of us, and more of God.
This is what I am hoping to accomplish this Lent season, “less of me”, and more of God!
To do this I am reading “40 Days of Decrease” by Alicia Britt Chole. (I know I am getting a late start, but I will catch up. I was on vacation when Lent started, so I started the book this weekend. You can too if you want.)
In the book description on the back cover, it says that “40 Days of Decrease” calls us to fast of apathy, injustice, resentment, hypocrisy and more, so there can be room for more love of God.
On Day 2, this quote leads the day’s devotion, “Christian spirituality … is not about us. It is about God. The great weakness of American spirituality is that it is all about us: fulfilling our potential, getting the blessings of God, expanding our influence, finding our gifts…. The more there is of us, the less there is of God. (Quoted from Eugene Peterson, the Christian Century)
Does that sound familiar? It does to me. We always want God to help us be more, do more, feel better… When do we ask for more of God?
The author, Alicia, says that the Lent season is about walking with Jesus and His disciples during that first Easter. We shall walk with them through grief, betrayal, and pain. Easter ends with joy, but the journey is hard. Alicia leads us there in her book, with 40 devotionals, “40 Days of Decrease”. Do you want to join me on this journey to make less of me and find more God?
You can begin by going to Amazon, and reading the first part of the book, which will get you started until you can get the book in your hands. Amazon lets you read the introduction and Day 1 and most of Day 2. The Day 2 fast is “regrets”.
I am excited about starting this journey! When I finish the book, I will do a book review, but for now, I am just giving you an introduction, and the opportunity to start this book during Lent. I hope we have an amazing journey this Easter!