Give it Up or Take it Up?
Grace and peace to you. Living together in the forgiveness of sins that we have by grace through Christ Jesus our Lord is a blessing that is altogether way too easy to take for granted.
Lent is a 40-Day period leading to the remembrance of the death and resurrection of our Lord. This year we once again journey to the cross, recalling the suffering and sacrifices of the only begotten Son of God – who became incarnate by the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilot, was crucified, died and was buried and on the third day rose again from the dead – to take the sin of the world away.
Often people speak about “giving something up for Lent.” I do not wish to discourage people from self-discipline. However, this year, instead of “giving up” something, let’s “take up” the Bible and prayerfully meditate on what God has done for us to bring us everlasting life, to sustain us now in our sinful condition by preserving the life He gives us through Holy Baptism and sustains in Holy Communion.
Let us “take up” the cross of Christ in our daily lives. This does not mean that we purposefully look for things to make us suffer, but instead it means to proclaim with boldness the gospel to a hostile world that is dying and headed for an everlasting separation from God. Let’s “take-up” the habit of gathering with the congregation each time it meets for worship, including mid-week services during the season of Lent.
Let’s “give-up” the sin of pride by thinking that we’re doing pretty well in this world. Let’s “give-up” apathy. Through daily contrition and thankfulness, pray to our Father in heaven. Let’s “give-up” loving the things of this world more than we love God – and together, we will walk together in the peace of God which we have through the forgiveness of sins in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Pastor David (a.k.a. Rev. D)