Today is Ash Wednesday – what does that mean?

ash wed crossThe 40 days of Lent that we observe is a season of preparation for us. The 40 days represents the 40 days of Jesus’ preparation for his earthly ministry while he wandered in the desert. It is a time of reflection on our own lives here on earth and a time to ask ourselves some heavy questions.

Read Joel 2: 12-13; Luke 4: 1-13

Questions for reflection on your own heart and life (as suggested by Biblegateway’s “Walking with Christ to the Cross”):

  • In what areas of life are you most aware of wanting to return to God with a whole heart? For example, you might consider areas in which you feel defeated, have grown cold, or need forgiveness.
  • The prophet Joel stresses God’s grace, compassion, and love for those who return to him. What grace, compassion, or demonstration of love do you most need from God in the areas of life you just identified?
  • What do you hope might change in these areas if you were completely yielded to Christ, emptied of self, and richly indwelt by the Word of God?
  • What lies might the devil use to keep you from returning to God with a whole heart?
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