Blooming in the Desert: Lent 2023
Lent 2023 is upon us. it's a 40 day/6 week period beginning on Ash Wednesday and ending on Holy Saturday. The number "40" brings to mind Jesus' withdrawal into the desert after his baptism, as well as the 40 days and nights of flooding during Noah's time, and the 40 years of the Israelites wandering in the desert. All of these "40" scenarios are ones of limitation - a desert without food or drink, a wooden ark with wild animals and limited supplies, and a wilderness with (only) daily manna.
Lent is an invitation into limitation for us too. It means "spring" and is derived from a word meaning "long." So, Lent has the capacity to lengthen us, to put some critical distance between us and what we're used to reaching for, what we're accustomed to getting, what we're compulsively habituated to.
Andy and I talk about Lent as an invitation to not turn away from the hard stuff, but to gather it up and bring it into our season of worship. We share about what we're each doing for Lent, as well as other creative ideas. For some more of those, as well as some good quotes and helpful devotionals, online retreats, fasting inspiration and more, see my Lent Guide 2023. And blessed Lent. :)