The Season of Lent

Today is Ash Wednesday, the official beginning of Lent.  lentNot counting Sundays Lent lasts for 40 days, the period of time Jesus spent fasting in the wilderness.  For many years we at Clear Lake Church of Christ have recognized Easter to be a special day.  One of my fondest memories of an Easter service here was when the entire congregation participated in the flowering of the cross.  Each member walked to the front of the sanctuary and after taking the Lord’s Supper, placed a flower on a large wooden cross that stood in center of the stage.  When it was completed the cross appeared to be bursting with life!  The symbolism was a powerful reminder of the eternal life Jesus gives us by means of his death and resurrection.

I am excited this year to not simply celebrate Jesus’ resurrection on Easter but to spend time with him in the wilderness; to journey with him to the cross and learn what it means to die to myself.  During this season of Lent we will be encouraging the church to have times of self-reflection and confession of sin.  We want to grow in our understanding of our humanity and what it means that we have come from dust and will return to dust.  Facing our mortality and acknowledging that we are not gods but only humans.  Growing in our honesty about the battles we face between the flesh and the Spirit.  And owning up to the battles where the flesh is winning.

Lent is not simply a season of repentance, however, it is a time of renewal.  By recognizing our need for Jesus we allow his Spirit to work in the transformation of our character.  At this Saturday’s prayer retreat we will be given some tools to help us during the season and on Sunday you will be asked to identity one area of life you would like to see develop during the time leading up to Easter.  Before a flower develops a full bloom it is a single bud.  Be thinking about the spiritual “flower buds” you want to see grow in your life.

I believe Easter 2016 will be a special day for our church.  Not, because of any special event we have planned; but because we will have spent significant time preparing our hearts.

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Byron FikePreaching Minister

Byron has been the preaching minister at Clear Lake since 1999. He and his wife have three grown children, who have also devoted their lives to serving the Lord. In his personal time, Byron likes to read books, watch movies, and play with his little dog Willie. He also is an avid follower of Alabama football, having grown up in Tuscaloosa during the glory days of Bear Bryant.

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