24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.
In an attempt to prepare my heart this season of Lent I was reading through John 12 yesterday, contemplating what I was going to "give up". For many, the season of lent is something that has lost it's meaning through the tradition- giving up things for the sake of giving them up, rather for the sake of drawing closer to God.
As I was considering what to "give up", I wanted to make sure that I was sacrificing with the right heart- not just to "say" I was participating in lent. This beautiful verse caught my attention, as it usually does- and took my heart back to the true meaning of this season.
I don't mean to sound morbid, but really, how do you get around that when reflecting on this season of Lent? These days, in preparation for Easter, are centered around the concept of death founded in the crucifixion of our Savior. Death of the perfect Lamb of God. Death to the bondage of sin and death. Death to the prisons of self: Self-centeredness. Self-hatred. Selfishness. Self-absorption. Self-gratification.
Death to self, in order to open ourselves up to life in Christ.
In a tiny way, this season of Lent...this season of "giving up" is one small way to allow the seeds of our SELF to die, so that the life of Jesus may flourish in our own lives.
So, no matter what you choose to lay down this season of Lent, remember this one thing: "Nothing, how little so ever it be, if it is suffered for God's sake, can pass without merit in the sight of God."- Thomas a Kempis.
As you learn to die daily to self in this season of Lent, may you be filled continually with His life.