Just recently a friend and I were talking about Lent and she said, “I just don’t get this Lent thing.”
I’ll be honest. I can’t always explain with words what I feel God calling me to do in my heart. There are times it takes walking it out for a while before I have the language to explain it. This Lenten season is a walking season. As I reflect on each name I realize Lent’s focus in not confession or crucifixion, but the man who made a way for me to be in God’s presence. I’m paying close attention to the One who hung on the cross, and settled the score, took the penalty for me. Lent is the story of a courtroom where I deserve judgment and instead receive grace upon grace.
The legal definition of mediator is “one that works to effect reconciliation, settlement, or compromise between two parties” (Merriam Webster).
For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.–1 Timothy 2:5-6
This is my testimony plain and true. Perhaps today is the proper time to share it.
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.
Christ died for my sin, for the world’s sin so that I might be brought back to God. He paid sin’s ransom, and I became the “righteousness of God in Christ Jesus”. No amount of good works, or fasting, or spiritual disciplines will make me more righteous, more suitable to be in God’s presence. Observing Lent doesn’t make me less sinful or clean me up.
Instead it reminds me Jesus, the Mediator, completed what I will never be able to complete on my own. His death and resurrection reconciles me, makes me right, brings me back into relationship with the Holy. This is the Good News, the hope of the gospel that dwells in me.
For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.–Colossians 1: 19-23