In this season of Lent – repentance is the key thought – humbling ourselves before our God – asking for His forgiveness for our sinful ways – giving thanks for His gift of salvation. Because of these things, we may want to sacrifice things that we’ve been hanging onto to tightly. We might fast or meditate on God’s Word. These things are good, but salvation isn’t the result of them. That happens only by the grace of God.
The act of unconditional love is something we humans have a great deal of trouble with. It’s tough for us to forgive when we’ve been hurt by words or deeds. We tend to add those hurts to the baggage that gets heavier each day. Unconditional love requires us to put others before ourselves and that’s a tough concept. We may wonder what’s in it for us? how will I benefit? We may even falsely believe that love is for fools and a sign of weakness.
Lent marks the beginning of the liturgical calendar in our churches. What a perfect time to start over by making a to-do list or some unselfish resolutions.
How about doing an act of random kindness each day? As we contemplate the sacrifices Jesus made for us, let’s turn our hearts outward. Here are a few ideas:
- Shovel someone’s sidewalk.
- Visit a nursing home and talk to someone for an hour.
- Read a story to a kindergarten class.
- Give someone a hug.
- Share the Gospel message.
- Bring a crock pot meal to a shut-in.
- Care for your neighbor’s pet while they’re away.
The list could go on and on, but the point is, this is the perfect time to turn our thoughts to others, as Jesus did for us.