Summary: The Lenten season bares the skeletons of our disobedience in more ways than one; it Illuminates the one who was “obedient, even unto death on a cross” for our salvation. It also illuminates the less than stellar attitudes and behaviors we are prone to dis
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness and being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death – even death on a cross.” (Phil. 2: 3-8)
Dear Friends in Christ. Do you ever have problems with your children or grandchildren being disobedient? I know we can’t seem to get away from it in our house. We only had two boys and yet after they left the roost it’s been a non-stop stream of grandkids for the last 17 years! And wouldn’t you know it; we’re down to the last one (knock on wood) who’ll be 4 years old in July and this could be the “light at the end of the tunnel of kid care, when all of a sudden we get another one!!! This one younger than all the other 6 grandkids. This one came along at only 10 weeks old – talk about robbing the cradle! And we even paid to take care of this one!!!
Just when I think we’re done with those loving little ones with a mind of their own and one that doesn’t recognize the word NO…. we’ve bought into the “senior puppy love” syndrome and now have a Toy Chihuahua to terrorize our golden years! Dingo – as he’s appropriately named – well, maybe Dingbat might be more accurate – is a handful. We didn’t have to take him to DISOBEDIENCE SCHOOL – He wrote the text book for the course!
I love him to death….and he’s come close to that a time or two in his young life of criminal behavior. Disobedience, it seems extends to the four-legged of God’s creation as well as the two-legged variety. It gets better with age, I suppose. But still it hangs around.
You’d think that after a lifetime of dealing with children whose primary responsibility in life is to have fun at any expense, especially yours, after having survived our own fits and bouts with disobedience (many of us I’m sure were legendary in our time!), that we would be models of perfect behavior; we would be the standard bearers for obedience. But sadly that’s not the case. Oh, we’re much more adept at it today. We don’t plunge headlong into overt disobedience. We’re much more subtle about it. We’re adept at manipulating the system. After all, we’ve had years of practice.
Isn’t it interesting that some of our bad habits continue to this day? Of course we don’t have to worry anymore about being “Grounded for Life,” or of being sent to our room, or of having to go without dinner or sit in a corner. We’ve matured. We are masters of our own destiny to some extent. Or at least we think we are. Yet, we are still prone to being disobedient. And, while the nature of our disobedience may be more easily covered up and overlooked in our mature state, it can and does at times lead us down a path that is not the road upon which our Lord would have us walk.
The Lenten season bares the skeletons of our disobedience in more ways than one; it Illuminates the one who was “obedient, even unto death on a cross” for our salvation. It also illuminates the less than stellar attitudes and behaviors we are prone to display in our spiritual life. In the deeply personal and private reflection of our own faithfulness, in the self-examination of our Christian attitude, and in the humbling and profoundly disturbing remembrance of the final days in the human life of our Savior, we come face to face both with how our Lord would have us be and how far we have to go to become that way.
We see in the haunting horror of those who walked with him, ate with him, who witnessed His miracles and His transfiguration and who were taught by Him, the tenuous and tepid nature of the human spirit. In the face of uncertainty, in the fear of reprisal or even death, they crumbled in their faith, they drifted from their obedience, they turned from Him.
Lent is meant to be a time of personal exposition. It’s meant to cause us to rethink our priorities. It’s meant to allow us to fully appreciate Christ’s work in our life, to repent and seek His mercy on us in a way that acknowledges our true intentions and seeks His guidance and help in our spiritual renewal. It’s a time of obedience – real obedience to His Word. It’s a time for tender, compassionate, loving renewal in Christ.