By Laurie Goddard
It wasn’t until coming to college that I realized Lent was a thing. I now see it as a gift to the believer, an opportunity to break the usual ebb and flow of life to look more closely at Christ.
If you know me you probably know that I love the Enneagram. It’s a really compelling perspective on personality that has captured my attention for a few years now. A writer I follow reminded me with a simple tweet, “Glance at the Enneagram, gaze at Christ.” What a simple reminder — where is my gaze? Life is life, and of course we get distracted here and there, glancing at other things that are shiny or interesting, but where is our gaze?
Hebrews 12:1-3 reminds us to fix our eyes on Jesus. Our creature comforts, our limiting thoughts about God and about ourselves, our desire to be seen well, and our fears of the unknown can entangle us, creating obstacles to run the race well. So we give up these lesser things because we have an invitation to the greatest thing, being closer to our Lord Jesus. We are invited to something so grand and glorious in knowing Jesus. For this season of Lent, let us gaze upon Christ and meditate on his lavish love for his people.
Maybe you’ll be giving up Netflix for 40 days. Maybe you’ll be adding a Lenten devotional to your mornings. Whatever it is, let us trust together that whatever small thing we do to strengthen our gaze on Christ, he will do great things with it. Lent is not about feeling good about some sort of personal self-discipline, it is about “looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” The gospel is far richer, deeper, and more full than we could ever imagine.