Life and Light
40 Gifts of Lent | Gift 1
Reflections on Matthew 1 – 7
You are the light that shines for the world to see. Matthew 5:14
The gift of God’s son as the light of the world gives life
A darkness has been flooded with light and is no more
His infinite love for us has shattered this darkness
And the flicker of light grows bigger
The gift of life and light to the world cannot be hidden
If your life, by its order, by the way in which you handle pressure, by the way in which you take criticism, by the way in which you treat the people who work under you, if you are like Jesus Christ, the beauty of that is going to show up the reality of the environment. A good light shows you real color, right?
Have you ever noticed that sometimes you pull out a pair of socks, and you can’t tell if they’re blue or black, and you look in one light and you still can’t tell, and you have to come to a good light in order to tell whether it’s blue or black? A real good light shows you the real colors. If you are a Christian walking like Jesus Christ, then the beauty of your life shows everybody around you what is good and what is bad.~Tim Keller, Salt and Light
About 40 Gifts of Lent
I love the anticipation of celebrating birthdays with my children and grandchildren and can’t wait to gather again with my family and friends around a brightly lit tree at Christmas. My focus for any event or special occasion is mostly on the gift I will buy and then tape it up with all of the wrapping and trimmings to make it a beautiful presentation to give away. I do enjoy watching them rip into the paper and toss the pretty bow without a care to get to the inside of that package.
It’s so much fun to be on the receiving end of good gifts!
I am anticipating the arrival of Easter and celebrating the most amazingly good gift I’ve ever received. I want to focus my heart on the fulfilled expectation of Christ’s first coming and the glorious expectation of His second coming. I want to focus on the freedom I have in Christ to overcome strongholds, yet also to gain strength, hope, and peace as I lean into the trials.
Lent is usually about giving something up to remember the sufferings and ultimate price that Christ endured on our behalf. But I’m not doing that this year. While I’ll never forget the price Jesus paid to rescue me, I don’t want to give something up in order to remember…to receive inner peace or a personal triumph of going without.
I want to anticipate and receive unexpected gifts during Lent. I want to rip open beautiful presents everyday to discover a different gift inside. When I discovered the link to #theLentChallenge to read the entire New Testament during Lent 2014, I immediately knew, by making this commitment, I would receive (at least) 40 gifts! My heart is bursting at its seams in anticipation for the gifts God will show me.
You are welcome to join me in opening a new gift everyday. It’s not too late to start.