Monday, February 12, 2018
Matthew 6:17-18: When you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others when you are fasting, but only to your Father who is in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret will reward you.
The season of Lent is about to begin. It is a time of repentance, remembrance, and renewal. It is a time to focus our attention and devotion toward ourselves and what Jesus did for us. It is a time to fast. It is connected to the time when Jesus, after He was baptized, was in the wilderness for 40 days and 40 nights fasting.
So when we are fasting and focusing our attention on repentance, remembrance, and renewal, do we make a "big deal" about it? Do we draw attention to ourselves? Do we say, "Look at me! I'm doing what I'm supposed to do. It's all about me!" Absolutely not!
This time is about enriching the relationship we have with God the Father. It's a time that allows us to focus upon what separates us from the Father as well as who brings us into a new relationship with our Father. No one needs to know what is going on.
So what does the world see? The world sees is a person who doesn't brag or boast about or draw undo attention to the relationship he or she has with God. The world sees a person, while going through the fasting, remembering, renewing, and repenting, who shows a quiet and humble demeanor and who is confident in his or her relationship with God because of Jesus and what He did.
And when people see you, they see you living out your relationship with God your Father in a way that shows God's grace and love and mercy with humility and confidence knowing in your heart and mind you are forgiven and renewed by God's grace through Jesus. And people will see you and know something is different about you without you drawing undo attention to you. Dear God, lead us to live humbly and confidently in Your Grace so that people will see You in us, Amen.
Pastor Robert Hemsath joined Faith Lutheran Church and School as the Senior Pastor in January 2017. Pastor Hemsath comes to FLC from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Waxahachie, TX. He has also served congregations in Aberdeen, ID and Pocatello, ID. He has been a Lutheran pastor for the past 20 years.