“Prepare the way for the Lord,

Make straight paths for him”

Matthew 3:3 (NIV)

Several years ago, a dear Christian friend shared with those in attendance at a Sunday evening service that we prepare for company, for vacations, and for work. She then said, “We should also prepare ourselves for worship.” How can we prepare ourselves for worship?

We have to do some preliminary work before we go before God. We have to make certain that we are right with Him. We have to ask Him to send His Holy Spirit into our place of worship.

Our first act of preparation is to humble ourselves—tell God what we have done or thought that went ag. We are to ask Him to look at our hearts and deal with any sinfulness we may have. (2 Chronicles 7:14) Some people may think that they do not have to do this. Nevertheless, God knows all about us and can forgive us for our sin of thinking too much of ourselves.

In the Church year, we have two periods where we are in preparation for special days. One of them is Advent; the other one is Lent. During Lent, we focus on the most harrowing time the disciples had. They did not understand what was happening to their leader or to them. We read the most beautiful messages of our Lord Jesus, not quite understanding the impact of His words.

During this season of Lent, I am studying a book entitled, 40 Days of Decrease by Alicia Britt Chole. Each of the forty divisions ends with a devotional reading of a section of the book of John, starting with chapter 12 and continuing until the end of the gospel. In addition, in each day’s reading the author suggests some habit or attitude we might choose to fast that day.

Another Lenten booklet, available to people at our church, entitled Living Lent As People of the Resurrection, by Rich Bimler gives the readers certain key words to reflect upon while reading the devotional thought of each day. These words are; Ponder, Purpose, People, Proclaim, Pain, and Promise.

As you go through the Lenten season, I pray that you grow closer to God and stronger in your faith.