Read: We beg you as Christ’s representatives, “Be reconciled to God!” God caused the one who didn’t know sin to be sin for our sake so that through him we could become the righteousness of God. Since we work together with him, we are also begging you not to receive the grace of God in vain. He says, I listened to you at the right time, and I helped you on the day of salvation. Look, now is the right time! Look, now is the day of salvation! -2 Corinthians 5:20-6:2
Reflect: Right after Jesus got baptized, what did he do? Go to a party? Start healing people? No, not yet- he went into the wilderness for 40 days. During this time, he was tempted by the Adversary, or Satan, to hold on to things other than God, to food, to power, to wealth. But through this challenging time, God’s angels were caring for Jesus too. And Jesus didn’t pick an easier way out of those 40 days by giving into temptation; Jesus held on to God for dear life, and to God alone. When Jesus comes out of the wilderness, he begins his public ministry by saying “Now is the time!” (Mark 1:15)
The apostle Paul shares the same message: I beg you, he writes, hold on to God, and let God hold onto you! That’s why we give things up for Lent. Not so we can pretend to be more pious and Christian than we are. Nope. So we can let go of a little more of what doesn’t save us, and hold tighter to who does save us.
Pray: Let me experience your saving me, O God, and make me dissatisfied with anything trying to take the place of your amazing grace.
Act: Tell someone you trust about a temptation you are facing that could draw you away from dependence on God. Ask for their prayers.
Family: Look up the story of Jesus’ temptation in Mark 1. It’s such a short story, big kids could memorize it!