THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK, March 15 2019

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I overheard someone saying: ‘I’m not religious but Lent is a good time to give up something in your diet.’

It made me wonder why someone would choose the period of Lent for that purpose. Why not give up something at any time if Lent is irrelevant?

For centuries, Christians have chosen to deny themselves things they enjoy on their journey during Lent. This usually takes the form of chocolate or alcohol or whatever luxury would be sorely missed.

It is a time of abstinence and is meant to focus attention on the spiritual journey as we walk the Easter road once again.

However it is becoming more popular now to take something on, rather than give something up.

People engage in various activities from committing to write a letter to a prisoner of conscience every day via Amnesty International, to serving in a soup kitchen.

There is much we can do in this world. A world in danger from climate change, war, abuse of power, and general disregard for the fragility of the planet.

Online petitions flood into our mailboxes every day asking us to sign them for a multitude of worthy causes, and it is difficult to keep up with it all.

However maybe we could make a decision this Lent to focus on one of these issues, and make a personal resolution to do something to help.

As we think of Jesus taking on the power of the Roman army and the might of the establishment, we know that even one person can make a difference.

Yes, that one person was Jesus. But didn’t he promise to send his spirit to be with us – to make a difference?