What Is Lent?
Lent is a time of reflection and preparation for the Easter season. It is a time to reflect on the human condition and on the goodness of God. It is a time to examine our hearts in light of the amazing love and grace demonstrated on the cross where Jesus laid down His life for ours.
At the end of the season, Lent also gives us hope as we look beyond the cross and to the resurrection, a promise of a bright future for those that believe in Jesus.
Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, which is on March 6 this year, and ends on Thursday, April 18, 2019. During this period, many Christians observe Lent through prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and abstinence.
Christians, who observe Lent, usually give up something for 40 days to represent the 40 days Jesus spent fasting in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). They give up habits and foods such as caffeine, social media, fast food, television shows, and sweets.
What Can I Do for Lent?
Since Lent is about connecting with Jesus in a deeper way and experiencing spiritual growth, you can try something new this year by forming a new habit rather than giving up an old one. Here are five ways you can participate in the Lenten season this year.
1. Read the Bible daily.
For the next 40 days, read the Bible every day. You can read a daily devotional such as Vertical. You can choose a plan on the Bible app or simply go through 1-2 books of the Bible over the next several weeks. It might be a good time to read about Jesus’ ministry, death, and resurrection. You can also read a book about the Bible from our list of 25 Resources to Strengthen Your Relationship with God.
2. Pray throughout the day.
Most of us spend time praying to God at some point in our day. Some of us get up in the morning to pray while some of us pray before we go to bed at night. But what if we prayed throughout the day?
Before you go to a meeting or give a presentation in class, you can pray for help and guidance from the Holy Spirit. Or while your children are napping, you can ask for peace and patience for the rest of the day. Or you can simply thank God for what He has done in your day so far such as hearing good news at work or finding rest in the middle of the day.
3. Give money to a cause or local organization.
Take some time doing research on a cause or people group you are passionate about. Then, find an organization or charity to which you can donate your money to help that cause or people group. If you observe traditional Lent, you could give up Starbucks or going out to eat and donate that money to a good cause. This is a great way to make a difference this Easter season!
4. Do random acts of kindness.
You can choose to do 40 days of random acts of kindness or a couple per week. Random acts of kindness can include paying for someone else’s meal in the drive-thru line, bringing coffee to work for your team, baking goodies for your neighbors, and writing a nice note for a server that did an awesome job (and leave a nice tip!).
This might be great to do with your children this Easter, too! A small act of kindness can make a difference in someone else’s day.
5. Find your place to serve at church or with a local organization.
You can also give your time and talents by finding a place to serve. You could try serving on a team at church for several weeks such as a student ministry team or a communications team. If you are a Chase Oaker, you can serve on one of our Campus Teams or Partner Teams.
If you are looking for other ways to participate in Lent this year, check out 25 Great Things You Can Do for Lent.
No matter how you spend time preparing for the Easter season, we want you to celebrate Easter at Chase Oaks. Our prayer is for this season to be a meaningful season for you and your family as you reflect on and celebrate the amazing love Jesus has for each of us. We hope to see you at one of our campuses!