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February 27, 2012


How to Do Lent Properly

Joshua has a great observation

In other words, your Lenten discipline should not be arbitrary. If you have a problem with lust, don’t give up chocolate. Give up whatever it is that leads you into lustful behaviour.And don’t just give it up for Lent, use Lent to give it up forever. Likewise, if you take up something during Lent, use Lent to keep it forever!Let the Lord know that you are committed to turning from the sin he has shown you and then ask him to help you in your task though the power of his Holy Spirit.


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9 comments

Thanks David,
Though they are comments that I agree with strongly and would love to accept as my own. They belong to a certain Presbyter from Binghampton!

[1] Posted by Josh Bovis on 2-27-2012 at 09:51 PM · [top]

Thankyou Matt!

[2] Posted by Josh Bovis on 2-27-2012 at 10:08 PM · [top]

aaah, you were quoting him!

Full circle!

[3] Posted by David Ould on 2-27-2012 at 11:13 PM · [top]

Hey David, I read that quote and I knew it sounded VERY familiar, and that it was something I’d posted at Lent & Beyond at some point.  So I checked.  It’s from a piece Matt Kennedy wrote in 2005.  You can find a portion of it here at Lent & Beyond:

http://anglicanprayer.wordpress.com/2010/02/17/matt-kennedy-advice-on-lenten-disciplines/

and the full archived post is here
http://web.archive.org/web/20050305115954/http://www.binghamtongoodshepherd.com/article2.9.05.shtml

[4] Posted by Karen B. on 2-28-2012 at 05:19 AM · [top]

Told you it was not my work David. Your age is showing!

[5] Posted by Josh Bovis on 2-28-2012 at 05:21 AM · [top]

In addition to the portion of Matt’s article quoted above, I really liked his short, powerful explanation of repentence as “active transformation:” 

Which leads us to the second part of the question: what is repentance?

The word “repentance” comes from the Greek word “metanoia.” Metanoia literally means “to turn around and go the other way.” And that, simply stated, is the perfect description of repentance. When you sin you turn away from God. Repentance turns you around. It’s much more than just feeling sorry for doing wrong (although that is the place to start). It’s an active transformation; a commitment to do, to act, to move in accordance with God’s will rather than against it.

This reminds me that repentance is not just our choosing to turn away from sin, but also God’s work transforming us as we choose Him so that we are literally “turned around” reoriented towards God again, choosing to walk in His Way.

Thanks Matt+ for a great article on Lent that continues to be a blessing 7 years later!

[6] Posted by Karen B. on 2-28-2012 at 05:26 AM · [top]

And while I’m at it, another Lenten meditation from Fr. Matt that we’ve posted at L&B in the past can be found here:

http://anglicanprayer.wordpress.com/2009/03/19/from-our-archives-matt-kennedys-2006-refection-on-holy-despair/

[7] Posted by Karen B. on 2-28-2012 at 05:36 AM · [top]

Nice to see some Calvinist into Lent   tongue rolleye

[Meant as a friendly tease, as most Calvinist I’ve met are also Presbyterians, so when encountering Lent, tend to react is all sorts of odd ways from outright rejection to “fast from sin” {err ... no ... because that would imply sin is a good thing, we sacrifice good things, and should outright avoid rebellion) to more liberal “do things for the environment].”

Thank you Team Stand Firm, also Team Lent & Beyond!

——

My suggestion is to fast on whatever is going to give you enough trouble in which prayer is needed and will cause thoughts like “You know, I really don’t know if I appreciate what it is to offend a Holy God and His forgiveness.” I live in the victory of Christ so often that I find it too easy to forget the cosmic magnitude of my own rebelliousness and the even greater act of Jesus, for some reason when I have a tiny belly ache from a weekly mini-fast, I tend to begin to ponder such things.

[8] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 2-28-2012 at 08:03 AM · [top]

Matt’s quoted:

  Which leads us to the second part of the question: what is repentance?

  The word “repentance” comes from the Greek word “metanoia.” Metanoia literally means “to turn around and go the other way.” And that, simply stated, is the perfect description of repentance. When you sin you turn away from God. Repentance turns you around. It’s much more than just feeling sorry for doing wrong (although that is the place to start). It’s an active transformation; a commitment to do, to act, to move in accordance with God’s will rather than against it.


So different from what TEC’s PB said on Sunday in Hong Kong. 
Full text available:  ens_022612_pbSermonHongKong

The time is now, the kingdom is here, repent and believe. We often misunderstand that word “repent.” It means turn around and move toward that loving and healing relationship with God. It means “choose life.” It does not fundamentally mean to be sorry for what is past. Repentance is about turning around and facing in God’s direction, it is about choosing ways of love and welcome rather than rejection. Believing the good news of God’s love means letting our own hearts be changed into instruments that meet the world with the same kind of love.

[9] Posted by maineiac on 2-28-2012 at 11:06 AM · [top]

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