We are to give thanks to God because he is good. Somehow good is not powerful enough term to use to describe him and his works. His love endures forever. Here again love is considered plain or ordinary. Agape love is more precise. It is more of a ‘brotherly or sisterly’ love for mankind. Compassion, showing mercy, and genuine caring for one another is more like what God wants us to be.
I remember growing up, as a Catholic, and every year it was almost like a contest. We would tell anyone willing to listen what we would “give up for Lent”. It was comical in a way how we as teenagers would suggest giving up something that was routine or insignificant. The winner of our ‘contest’ would of course be that person who would give up something that we considered of most value, or of greater sacrifice. We read how Christians were given the task of worshiping God during this time of year and how to celebrate our heritage by perform certain sacrifices, in a very particular way. It would seem that those that worshiped in a certain way, doing certain things would find favor with God, according to the Old Testament.
Fast forward to more modern times and the Lenten season tends to focus more on the qualities the Jesus taught us while he was here on Earth. The qualities of sacrifice for your fellow man, humility, compassion beyond ourselves. He shows us how to feel confident with our relationship with our Lord, that we really don’t have to consider our needs. God has told us that he will supply our needs. That task is his own. That fact should release us to focus more on our mission to lead our fellow man, like Christ, towards our Lord.
Contributed by Soonie Marin