What Is Lent?
There are both truths and misconceptions about Lent. When people think of Lent, a variety of things may come to mind – painful religious experiences of forced ritual, or the mystery of our faith, or an important time of spiritual preparation preceding the celebration of the resurrection of our Savior.
In the early centuries of the church, the forty days before Easter came to be recognized as the season of Lent (a Latin word that means “spring”), when new converts were prepared for baptism. This included biblical instruction, prayer, repentance, and fasting. In time, the entire church embraced the practices of Lent.
Early believers felt that the magnitude of Resurrection called for special preparation. Second-century believers fasted for several days as part of that preparation. Over the next few centuries, 40 days became the accepted length of the Lenten Season, perhaps in remembrance of Jesus’ fasting for 40 days in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11). Because early Christians considered it inappropriate to fast on the day of the Resurrection, Sundays were not included in the 40 days. Therefore, the Wednesday 46 days before Easter came to be regarded as the beginning of Lent.
Day 1: February 22, 2023
TWO MINUTES OF SILENCE:
Begin with two minutes of silence. Setting a timer is a good habit if you are new to silence, so you don’t have to think about the time. Recognize that God is present everywhere at the same time. So, intentionally place yourself in the presence of God and become quiet before Him. As you become silent/quiet, what do you hear – voices, traffic, your own breathing, the wind, your heart, distracting thoughts? What do you feel – tension, awkwardness, impatience, weirdness, etc? Try letting those things go.
John 1:1-18 NLT
Take a breath in as you pray, “You are here God…”
Let the breath out and pray, “…and so am I.”
What phrases stood out to you?
What might God be saying to you through this passage, and how can you respond today?