This is a short meditation that I wrote today as I was planning our first Sunday of Lent. I thought it would be most appropriate today, Ash Wednesday. This will be an integral part of our service on Sunday. A little background/explanation for those of you who won’t be there with us: I plan to decorate the front with 41 candles all surrounding the cross and light them while I’m speaking. Enjoy.
Welcome to Lent.
The 40 days prior to Holy Week.
40 days of remembrance.
40 days of sacrifice.
40 days of symbolism.
God sought to cleanse the earth, so he made it rain for 40 days and 40 nights.
After those 40 days, God promised never to destroy the earth again.
Moses lived with Jehovah on the mountaintop 40 days and 40 nights.
After those 40 days, Moses was given the law of the Covenant.
Jesus, after being baptized, fasted and wandered in the wilderness 40 days and 40 nights.
After those 40 days, Jesus began his ministry on earth.
After these 40 days, we will once again celebrate the passion of Jesus the Christ.
The remembrance, sacrifice, and symbolism of the Last Supper.
The remembrance, sacrifice, and symbolism of the Cross.
The remembrance, sacrifice, and symbolism of Resurrection.
40 days, 41 candles.
A remembrance and symbol of Christ’s life, which we are called to imitate.
Matthew 5:16 says “In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”
Over the next 40 days, each of these candles will be extinguished.
The last remaining candle, Jesus Christ, will burn; but fade, flicker, and be snuffed out.
We will be left in darkness.
But in John 8:12 Jesus says “”I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”
40 days that lead to darkness.
But point us to The Light.
What will you remember?
What will be your sacrifice?
What symbol will you cling to?