Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fat Tuesday means one thing....

Today is Fat Tuesday. That means one thing to me. Tomorrow is the beginning of Lent. For years Christians have celebrated Lent by giving up something they cherish. When I was young it was chocolate, Mt. Dew or Taco Bell.....maybe it's a behavior like giving up television or electronics or you can even add something to your daily routine that puts your focus on Jesus. The point is to have that reminder as to the price Jesus paid. It should be a time of refection and repentance, a time to realize the brokeness of our lives and that the only way is through Christ. It is an opportunity to put in check what stuff we have in our life that isn't glorifying God.....to get rid of the extra. As I get older and grow in my walk with God, I really try to focus on the reason. 40 days.....just like Jesus in the desert. Preparing my heart for the sacrifice my God made for me. Preparing my heart for the magnitude of what Jesus did for my silly everyday sins. Truly realizing the suffering so I can relish in the victory when he rises on that 3rd day! If you don't know what Jesus did for me and you.....here it is:

Isaiah 53 (The Message) Isaiah 53 1 Who believes what we've heard and seen? Who would have thought God's saving power would look like this? 2-6The servant grew up before God—a scrawny seedling, a scrubby plant in a parched field. There was nothing attractive about him, nothing to cause us to take a second look. He was looked down on and passed over, a man who suffered, who knew pain firsthand. One look at him and people turned away. We looked down on him, thought he was scum. But the fact is, it was our pains he carried— our disfigurements, all the things wrong with us. We thought he brought it on himself, that God was punishing him for his own failures. But it was our sins that did that to him, that ripped and tore and crushed him—our sins! He took the punishment, and that made us whole. Through his bruises we get healed. We're all like sheep who've wandered off and gotten lost. We've all done our own thing, gone our own way. And God has piled all our sins, everything we've done wrong, on him, on him. 7-9He was beaten, he was tortured, but he didn't say a word. Like a lamb taken to be slaughtered and like a sheep being sheared, he took it all in silence. Justice miscarried, and he was led off— and did anyone really know what was happening? He died without a thought for his own welfare, beaten bloody for the sins of my people. They buried him with the wicked, threw him in a grave with a rich man, Even though he'd never hurt a soul or said one word that wasn't true. 10Still, it's what God had in mind all along, to crush him with pain. The plan was that he give himself as an offering for sin so that he'd see life come from it—life, life, and more life. And God's plan will deeply prosper through him. 11-12Out of that terrible travail of soul, he'll see that it's worth it and be glad he did it. Through what he experienced, my righteous one, my servant, will make many "righteous ones," as he himself carries the burden of their sins. Therefore I'll reward him extravagantly— the best of everything, the highest honors— Because he looked death in the face and didn't flinch, because he embraced the company of the lowest. He took on his own shoulders the sin of the many, he took up the cause of all the black sheep.

1 comment:

Beautiful Mess said...

Loved that version!

God bless you and your family!