Second Week of Lent | Sara Stacy

Psalm 69
Jeremiah 5:1-9
Romans 2:25-3:18
John 5:30-47

Growing up Southern Baptist, we typically did not observe the Lenten season. I honestly did not hear about it until I was in college when some friends were discussing what they were giving up. It was not until much later that I actually observed Lent. Not truly understanding the season though I just gave up something for 40 days “because everyone else was doing it.”

That’s probably not the best motivation for observing the Lenten season; however, I found it very liberating. I had a conversation during that time with a campus minister who educated me on the observance of Lent and the meaning it held for her personally. “It’s a matter of the heart and mind,” I distinctly remember her saying.

A part of today’s Scripture reading says, “Circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter” (Romans 2:29a). Our lives are fully and intentionally lived when done so by the heart and by the Spirit. As we chisel away something from our lives during the Lenten season, we circumcise our hearts through the Spirit’s direction. It’s a movement away from something towards God. In observing this season of self-denial, we are reflecting the 40 days Christ spent in the desert preparing and fasting. He was fed by the Spirit during this time, sustained in an unfathomable way to us. He was preparing His own heart, His very will to begin the ministry in for which He was born to live, and ultimately die.

During this time of chiseling things from our lives, whether they are material or internal, let us recall what it is we are preparing ourselves for as well. We are circumcising our hearts for the purpose we were born to live. May we remember it is not the outward display of denial but the inward state of the newly sculpted heart.

SARA STACY
Assistant Director of Student Activities

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