Graceful Foundations of Humility
Ash Wednesday, 2014
Ash Wednesday marks the first day of our Lenten Season and our journey of faithfulness. For the next forty days (not counting Sundays) we will be invited to follow God closely, explore the Bible intentionally, and prepare our lives for the celebration of Easter on April 20th. From a personal point of view, I pray that together we will all use the next forty days as a journey of faith development and enrichment.
We launch our journey with one of the most powerful and challenging chapters in Scripture. Isaiah 58 is a chapter that calls us to deep reflection, independent action, and profound humility. As you read it you will notice the theme of the ‘fast’ that is acceptable to the Lord.
[one_half last=last] Is it satisfactory to call upon the Lord and outwardly pretend that we are drawing close to God while quarreling with one another, treating people harshly, and raising our voices in argument? Or is there a better way? For the Christian (especially the Christian on a Lenten journey of discovery) the response that is desired has to do with breaking the chains of injustice, releasing the yoke of the oppressed, clothing the naked, and feeding the hungry.
The instruction is challenging…put your faith into action! Do not seek the Lord under false pretense but find a way to express your faith by meeting the needs of the marginalized.
Every time I read Isaiah 58 I find myself challenged and chastised. But I also discover that I have been renewed with the promise of a ‘well watered garden’ that provides abundance for others. During this Lenten season, let’s be restored by One who restores broken walls and who speaks healing into our lives.