Lent is supposed to be a season of introspection, looking at our lives and not just being sorry for the past but changing our futures. We usually think of repentance only in individual terms and facing the darkness we sometimes find in ourselves. But our own darkness reflects itself in the society around us.
Examining ourselves in Lent means looking at the ills in our society around us. On his way to Jerusalem, Jesus just didn’t focus on himself but on the sins of his time. The freezing temperatures in Texas are in a large measure a result of shortsightedness in addressing the ills created by overreliance on fossil fuels. The deniers are now trying to blame wind turbines, a source of clean energy.
The Nordic countries have wind turbines and colder weather – and more snow. True repentance means turning ourselves around as a society. We must break our old habits individually and collectively. Lent is a good time to start.
Prayer for the Day
We search for your voice, O God, and hear only the winter wind
But we know beneath the snow the earth stirs with sounds of life;
We look up into the sky, O God, but see only gray clouds
And we wait for the sun to break forth giving us hope and life.
Transform us from a people afraid of our own shadows
Into your people of courage and strength.
In the name of him who gives us a vision of hope,
Even Christ Jesus our Lord, Amen.
Thoughts for the Day
Repentance is always difficult. And not only because we must cross the threshold of self-love, but also because our own sins are not so easily visible to us.
- Alexander Solzhentisynenitsyn, Russian writer (1918-2008)
The challenge of social justice is to evoke a sense of community that we need to make our nation a better place, just as we make it a safer place.
- Marian Wright Edelman, founder Children’s Defense Fund, age 81
See, the Lord’s hand is not too short to save, nor God’s ear too dull to hear.
Rather, your iniquities have been barriers between you and your God.
And your sins have hidden God’s face from you so that God does not hear you.
Isaiah 59: 1-2