Today is Ash Wednesday. Also known as the beginning of Lent.
This is the season where Christians all over the world begin to reflect on the
sacrifice God made in allowing His Son, Jesus, to be killed in order to provide
a way that all people might be saved from an eternity in hell. An eternity of
separation from the love and care of God. The important point on which the
faith community focuses is not that Jesus died, but that He rose from the dead
after three days. In this act, God defeated death. Nothing can any longer stand
in the way of people being a part of God’s eternal Kingdom. All we have to do is
believe. Just believe. Only the decision to not believe in this gift from God
can deny you the eternal life God promises us.
As we begin to
prepare our hearts for the resurrection of Jesus, I find the easiest spot to
begin is at the beginning. And that beginning is Love. “God loved us and sent
His Son.” (1 John 4:10). God. Loved. Us. More. Than. Imaginable. To draw closer
to God, we have to put ourselves aside and let this Love fill our bodies,
souls, mind…every fiber of our being. In my experience, this is much easier
said than done. There is a whole lot of Jimmy to get (and keep) out of the way
before God can take complete occupancy. And, this same Jimmy, can get pretty
selfish about "his space."
As I look at the
love-gift of God in Jesus, I know I do not deserve it. Never have, never can,
never will; yet, God still gave it to me. That's the beauty of grace which I
recently wrote about and will be one of my focus points during Lent. On my
webpage and my Facebook page, I will be writing daily about my journey through
Lent. If you want to follow my daily thoughts, just visit
www.beinggods.blogspot.com or request to be my Facebook friend. For now, on day
one, I encourage you to just focus on this one truth. God loves you. Don't
worry about your warts, poor grades, lack of a job, stupid mistakes you
make...that's all overshadowed by those three words. God. Loves. You.
Also, don't let the
term Ash Wednesday scare you away. For those of us who may choose to attend a
service where ashes are applied to the forehead, it is simply a sign of
humility before God. Ash Wednesday is a day of reflection on what needs to
change in our lives if we are to be fully Christian. It begins my journey to be
a more effective Christian…a more effective man of God.
"For God so loved
the world, that He gave His only Son, so that whoever believes on Him will not
die for eternity, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)
Don't forget to
remind yourself today. God Loves You.
And for today my friends, this has been the gospel according to Jimmy.