Happy the people who know you, Lord,
who walk in the radiance of your face.
Happy Lent to you!
Happy? Lent? You might ask.
Yes, a very happy Lent. Because we can feel a bit freer, a bit more focused on getting closer to the Lord.
We do this at other times of the year, of course. But Lent is special because it marks a certain time before we will once again sing, “Hallelujah! He is risen!” Lent calls us to be more mindful of how we deepen our faith and how we live it out. How we pray, and how we preach (in the best sense of the word).
Some people deprive themselves of something for Lent. Chocolate. Movies. Sugar. Something “fun.”
Others add something on. Works of charity. Outreach to a neighbor or stranger.
Whatever the personal sense of obligation, I especially like the Ash Wednesday Gospel reading from Matthew 6:17-18) where Jesus instructs us, “When you pray, go to your inner room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.” This reinforces the idea that Lent is a wonderfully personal, private time, and one where we can deepen our relationship with the Lord more than ever before. How? By going to that private room and diving into Scripture, praying and listening longer, letting quiet wash away our stress and fill us with the goodness from God.
And as we do this, we will be as the Psalmist describes, “Happy” as we walk in the radiance of the Lord’s face.
Blessings for the day – and Lent,