Some holidays seem to blur together


When Lent and Easter follow so closely behind the Advent and Christmas seasons, I must admit, I find myself a little “holiday confused.” I walk into my local TJ Maxx (all-time favorite store!) only to find leftover Christmas clearance, Valentine’s cards, Mardi Gras beads, St. Patrick’s Day shamrocks, and chocolate Easter bunnies all in the same aisle. I am not sure what holiday to celebrate because they all seem to blur together.

However, as of Ash Wednesday, I choose to journey through Lent remembering all that Jesus has done for me during his 33 trips around the sun some 2,000-plus years ago.

This Lent, I remember his birth, his life, his ministry that was kick-started by his baptism and 40 days in the wilderness. I remember the stories of healing, the blind restored to sight, the sick made well, the lame to walk again, the dinner parties with religious leaders, tax collectors and prostitutes.

This Lent, I focus on the teachings of the Christ, the Sermon on the Mount, the Great Commandment, and the parables of all kinds he shared with so many who were willing to listen.

This Lent, I cling to his passion: a ride on a donkey, a Last Supper, a Gethsemane Garden, a Crown of Thorns, and an Old Rugged Cross.

This Lent I also look forward to a vigil of hope and a stone that is rolled away in which we find ourselves encountering our living Lord in the person of Jesus the Christ, the Anointed One.

This Lent, I long to let go of things that keep me from being the best version of myself, the version that God created me to be, a beautiful child of God made in God’s very own image.

This Lent, I definitely see the broken parts. I know that I am a hot mess but thanks be to God, I am redeemable and worthy of God’s incredible and steadfast love.

This season of Lent offers us space to reflect on the priorities in our lives: a healthy sense of self and well-being, and our relationship with God and with others. The bad news is that as Lent rolls on, we get a little closer to the cross. However, the good news is we also get a little closer to that resurrection moment of which we all need a glimpse.

So even if we are a little holiday confused, may these next weeks of Lent be a time of clarity and certainty. In our worship, education, mission, and fellowship, in fact, in every nook and cranny of our lives, may we be bolstered in our faith in the one triune God and all that this one triune God has done for us in sacrificial love.

Rev. Jennifer Eastman Hinkle is transitional pastor at the First Presbyterian Church in Delaware.

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