by Maggie Moore
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
When my children were little, my friends and I often discussed how to fulfill this portion of Scripture. Sharpies? Chalkboard art? Bible memory? We encouraged one another and got creative. We soon realized how this was easy to do during Christmas and the Advent season. Even local cities and Wal-Mart got into the game by putting up decorations for the coming Christmas season as they put the Halloween candy on sale! It occurred to us that even the Christian community marketed towards this, with Nativity sets, Advent calendars, sticker books, and “Jesus is the reason for the season” knickknacks.
We began questioning and asking, “Well, what about Easter and the resurrection?” Those things were a little harder to find. How many people own a “resurrection tomb” set? The resurrection is something we celebrate and hinge our faith on, but often we realize too late, “Oh, Easter is here already! Maybe we should do something!”
Lent is a season of preparation, making our hearts and minds ready for God’s amazing “answer” in Christ Jesus. When responding to a question on Sundays, most children quickly discover that if they answer “Jesus!” they’ll be right a large percentage of the time, regardless of understanding the point of the lesson. As we focus on the “questions” that are puzzling and distressing to us, we prepare for God’s incredible response. The impact of Jesus’ death and resurrection are much greater when we’ve spent time considering our need for rescue and relief. The power of forgiveness and joy of repentance are much deeper and stronger when we’ve had a season of Lent to consider our sin and our inability to improve in our own power.
Take time this Lent season to reflect, prepare, repent, ask, read and do something that focuses your mind and heart towards our great Savior.