We as Lutherans have a wonderful treasure to enjoy and to share. The Lenten season is a time of reflection and preparation for Easter. We intentionally set aside 40 days to think about Christ’s willingness to endure suffering and death on the cross that we might know our sins are forgiven and we have been given the gift of eternal life.

Years ago I was part of a clergy group that met for fellowship and prayer. I was the only Lutheran, and I would try to explain to them the importance of Lent. They just didn’t get it. Some of them told me it was “too Catholic”, and I would bite my tongue, as if learning from our Catholic sisters and brothers was a bad thing??? Each year we would hold a joint Good Friday service in the community. I was aghast when they suggested we sing songs about resurrection and Easter at the service. I blurted out loud, “No! Good Friday is a service to meditate on Christ’s death, not his resurrection.”

If you want to experience the wonder and beauty of Easter, come to the Lenten services! Christ’s resurrection is so much richer and meaningful after you have reflected on Christ’s death. Just as Spring is such a welcome relief after the cold winter, Easter brings renewed hope and meaning after observing the stark and simple Lenten season.

So, we you have to observe Lent? No, you don’t have to, but you might want to consider it. It is a treasure to be enjoyed.