Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Giving up Lent for Gospel Clarity

All the cool evangelical kids are starting to tell us again this year why we should recover the Christian calendar and give Lent a try. I'd like to suggest that perhaps we should first consider how Lent has in many cases been misunderstood to merit favor from God—simply in the [not] doing of the act. In light of its checkered past, I wonder if the very worst time of year to fast from something might not be the time of year when it's most likely to be misunderstood.

I read a blogpost yesterday arguing that Lent provides an opportunity to disengage from a culture in which all our needs can be effortlessly satisfied to the point of excess. That's a valid concern. But when in the year is that opportunity not available to us?

I really have no desire to fight anyone over this. Surely that wouldn't help anybody. If you choose to observe it in some way and it's helpful to you, I'll rejoice. Think of this as food for thought. Unless that's what you're giving up.