Lent is the time set aside for reflection and repentance leading up to Good Friday and Easter Sunday. This is preparation through prayer and self-denial. Just returning from three years of what could easily be described as self-denial, I have chosen not to give up anything specifically. However, that does not mean that I can not be prayerfully reflective during this time. It may be culture shock and it may just be part of the continual self discovery process but I have been struggling through some issues recently. Some of these things include contemplating truth, my own identity in Christ and what it means to be a Christian in California. I realize that these struggles are not unique to me but sometimes I feel like my issues are tattooed across my forehead for the world to see. I saw this sign at the mall while I was in South Asia and have recently been thinking that it is very fitting description for any Christian.
The process of sanctification is continual, messy and often painful. We all do and say things at times we don’t understand and might sometimes regret but that is why it is a process. When looking at Psalms we can be easily encouraged by the praises. However, I am also encouraged by the laments. There is hope that is conveyed through their honesty and in the end even laments can turn to praise.
How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
Consider and answer me, O Lord my God;
light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,
lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,”
lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.
But I have trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord,
because he has dealt bountifully with me.