So, I’m blogging every day (except Sunday) of Lent.
Don’t expect too much.
I just want to put some thoughts out there; thoughts that resonate with me, and that might resonate with you.
Hopefully, they’ll give you something to think about.
Maybe they will draw you a little closer to God, and to your true self.
Today’s word is “forty” (okay, or “40”).
In other words, the length of our Lenten journey.
(Also, a pretty cool U2 song.)
Forty is a pretty significant number in the Bible: it’s the number of years Israel wanders in the desert, and the number of days Jesus, who is re-enacting Israel’s journey, spends in the wilderness.
Days or years, it’s a long time. Jesus got hungry in the wilderness. Israel got angsty.
But it occurred to me that 40 is significant for another reason.
Experts—people who know a lot of stuff—will tell you that it takes somewhere between 30 to 60 days to form a habit.
I’m no mathematician, but 40 falls somewhere in between both of those.
This is important because Lent is (potentially, anyway) about much more than giving up chocolate, or ice cream, or Netflix.
Lent can be about getting over brokenness in our lives; about shining a light on areas of our lives that we need to face.
So many of these areas of brokenness started out as habits.
And habits can be broken, and/or replaced by new ones.
Which takes about 30-40 days.
Which means that Lent is a great opportunity for you to sow some new habits. Which means you can sow some new character traits.
Are you willing to surrender your old habits? Are you willing to embrace something new?
These 40 days are your gift. This season is an opportunity.