Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Heaven's Lent

Today is Ash Wednesday, the traditional start of the Lenten season of being serious, giving up something "for lent", repentance and reflecting on the life of Jesus (especially leading up to His trial and crucifixion). This traditionally culminates in Good Friday, where, traditionally speaking, believers are supposed to wrap themselves in the sadness of Christ's death so that, traditionally, on Easter Sunday we can finally whoop it up.

C.S. Lewis said, "Joy is the serious business of heaven." I am more and more and more and more convinced that Christianity has yet to fully tap into its truest potential. "On earth AS IT IS in heaven" is packed with truth waiting to be revealed in sons and daughters of God who are ready to be revealed as true sons and daughters of God. And, of course, there are elements of truth to everything in the first paragraph, BUT....

Unfortunately, Lent has played into the natural mind that says, "If we regularly beat ourselves up over bad behavior and allow for a sufficient amount of 'holy self-loathing', we can get right back to all that bad behavior we enjoy so much. And, of course, next year start all over again."
If you have any doubt that this is true you have but to look at "Fat Tuesday" celebrations.

Here's my Lenten challenge: give up joyless, unhappy behavior wrapped in the Name of Jesus! Turn on and tune into the serious business of Heaven's Lent. Sing loud. Worship hard. Pray passionately and genuinely. Love furiously. Hope like a kid. Laugh in the Name of Jesus. Going back to prayer; ask, seek and knock with delirious abandonment. Ask big. Seek widely and knock the door off the hinges. When you are through, walk as though you believe that you have received those things that you have prayed. Celebrate the results before you "see" them with your eyes.

Heaven can not do a thing that earth will not allow. If the serious business of heaven IS joy, and I believe that it is, then let's loose on earth what is loosed in heaven. Unspeakable joy.