What is Lent? Lent is the season when Christians have historically prepared their hearts for Easter with reflection, repentance, and prayer. Lent begins with Ash Wednesday and proceeds for forty days, culminating in Good Friday and Holy Saturday. Since Sundays are weekly celebrations of the resurrection of Jesus, the six Sundays in Lent are not counted as part of the forty-day season. Lent is an important season of the church year and provides an excellent way to help us focus our attention on God by the way we organize our time.
Devotions for Lent includes full-color artwork, contemporary and historical writings, and prayers, poems, and hymns from throughout church history. Each week includes devotional Scripture readings to help you set aside time to reflect and prepare for the celebration of Easter. Devotions for Lent may be used individually, in a group, or as a church. Below is a sample of a daily reading. Download the entire first chapter HERE.
The season of Lent walks us through the grief of Jesus’ last days before his crucifixion. As we read Jesus’ personal conversation with his disciples in the upper room, we imagine the joy of friendship coupled with the sadness of a friend’s imminent betrayal. As we enter into the darkness of Jesus’ arrest, trial, and beating, we weep with those first Christians, and in our efforts to save Jesus from ourselves, we grieve in our Peter-like betrayals.
The tradition of Lent—a forty-day sacrifice—is one way of mourning the death that sin has caused in our lives. As we see Jesus perfectly withstand Satan’s temptation in the wilderness, we admit our own shortcomings, our own inadequate sacrifices. This period of “giving up” has a profound way of recalling our desperate need for Jesus Christ.
“All God’s plans have the mark of the cross on them, and all His plans have death to self in them.” —E. M. Bounds (USA/1835–1913)76