Third Week of Lent | Joseph Kenkel

Psalm 88
Jeremiah 11:1-8, 14-20
Romans 6:1-11
John 8:33-47

Jesus tells us, “Everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin” (John 8:34). Only recently have I realized the amount of daily life that I spend being a slave to sin. Don’t get me wrong, I go to church every Sunday and pray often. But it takes a whole lot more than that to truly love and live as a disciple of Christ. Especially in our commercial, materialistic world, it is far too easy to slip away from the truth of God and give in to the countless idols that are prominent in our everyday lives. These idols are tricky. They steal our attention discretely and take our eyes off of God.

Personally—and I’m sure this is the case for many others—I have been a slave to the idol of a busy schedule. I say, “Oh Lord, I’ll give you more of my time tomorrow.” I then slip into a dangerous cycle of disconnect from God and out of a consistency of prayer and reflection. I don’t let God in, even though I’ve become overwhelmed by stress and anxiety. This separation from God leads to an intense feeling of loneliness. I am left echoing laments of the psalms, “O Lord, why do You reject my soul? Why do You hide Your face from me?” (Ps. 88:14)

Thankfully we may always come back to the comfort of knowing that God, the all-powerful maker of this universe is on our side. He Himself became man in order to die for our sins. Our idols and sinfulness are what held Him on that cross. The everlasting covenant and His everlasting promise to us is that we, sinners, can now be inheritors of the kingdom of heaven!

As we continue our journey through this Lenten season of renewal, it is essential that we not only work to offer up our sins to Christ, but that we also ask God to fill those empty spaces left by sinfulness. Through repentance, adoration, fasting and prayer, we may find ourselves purified, back in a place of true joy in unity with the Lord. For it is said, “Our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin” (Romans 6:6). The Lord is our hope and our salvation! Thanks be to God!

JOSEPH KENKEL
Sophomore, Psychology Major

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