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What is Lent

Lent is an old English word that means springtime. It was a way of speaking about a season before Easter, and over the centuries Christians have used this time of year before Easter to say, "I need springtime in my soul". It's a way to stop the cycle of spiritual status quo and to engage more fully with God and deal with those things in our lives that are out of conformity with Him. When we do that we actually find life in a story bigger than just our own. Whether you are only beginning to explore the claims of Jesus, or have been a Christian for quite some time, Lent creates space for us to reflect on the Story of Jesus and consider entering that story more deeply.

In his Pensees, Blaise Pascal put it this way, "Being unable to cure death and wretchedness people have decided in order to be happy not to think about such things." Lent counters this propensity and provides us a season as a community to take on the deep counterintuitive wisdom of Scripture. The way up is down, and the way to find joy is to honestly deal with our brokenness. As Jesus put it "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it."  Lent invites us to join Christ on the way of the Cross, a spiritual journey that begins with Ash Wednesday and ends in Easter celebration.

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The Origins of Lent