"New beginnings with Jesus"

For February 17, 2015 “Fat Tuesday”

[Jesus said] “When you fast, do not look somber, as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:16-18
Tomorrow begins the season of Lent. For many churches, this is the last day to party! Mardi Gras! Pancake Dinner! “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!” Isaiah 22:13 & 1Corinthians 15:32
I used to mock this whole idea, of giving up something for Lent, as eagerly as I avoided the excesses of Mardi Gras. Actually, no one ever invited me to a Mardi Gras party and I didn’t grow up with Lent, so I never was asked to give up something, either. It’s easier to judge something from the outside.
Then I remembered a book read long ago, “God’s Chosen Fast.” And I remembered about Jesus saying, “When you fast.” Not if. So today is the annual day of reckoning for me. To fast or not to fast. To avoid hypocrisy by making a big show of doing without, or miss an opportunity for my Father to reward me when I focus on Him instead of my belly.
Let’s look to Jesus and do both this year. God will know and bless.
In Christ, Pastor Dave Crawford

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