In an age when we are tempted to say “we have issues,” instead of “we sin,” Lent confronts us with some uncomfortable realities. Jesus, for His part, confronts sin the desert, and that same sin is still before us. Satan tempts Jesus to be something other than what God intended. The suggestion is made that He should use His gifts for Himself: feed people so they will make you special, do spectacular things to call attention to yourself, and use power to get what you want. Choosing Satan’s plan would be contrary to what God expected of His Beloved Son – which was that He be a humble, suffering servant. In the end, all sin might be reduced to this one thing: the choice to be something other than what God has created us to be.
Lent invites us into the desert to know our need for grace, wisdom, and strength, every day but especially in crises. Lent offers us a unique opportunity to look to God (in whose image we are made). Lent is the time to look to others to see the image in which they are made. Lent is also the time to practice saying “no” to what we know is wrong, without any compromise. Only when we say “no” to sin (and mean it) will our “yes” to God’s Will be credible in God’s sight.
Let us pray. “Grant, almighty God, through our observance of Lent, that we may grow in our understanding of the riches of your grace and depend of the guidance of your Holy Spirit. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.”