During this season of Lent, we are reminded that it is not an easy journey toward the cross with our Lord. It is a Lenten custom to deny ourselves something we really enjoy. In this small way, we share in and are reminded of the suffering of our Lord.
Each year I give something up for Lent: potato chips. You might laugh, but for me this is a big thing, as potato chips are the snack I enjoy most. My congregation knows this, and they sometimes jokingly tempt me by leaving me a bag of chips on the pulpit. Although hard to resist, I point out to them that the devil will not get to me.
Denying oneself can be a hard thing to do, but Jesus is asking us to do just that. By actually doing so, we will be given the strength to follow Jesus along his long journey to the cross.
Lord, we ask you to give us the strength to deny ourselves in order that we, too, can follow you. Amen. — RW