In many church traditions, the Lenten season does not find an appropriate place. The argument is often that all days are equal and one can fast and pray every day of the year. Yes, it is true that daily sins call for daily repentance. It is also true that all days are the same and fasting/praying during Lent does not have any special merit. However, our experience convinces us of another truth no less certain that often the worries of this world take over our frail bodies and resolve and make us all enervated and negligent to the spiritual concerns. If this neglect is not dissipated and dispersed by frequent admonition, it would be sealed up within our souls, resulting in impenitence. If we leave the choice to our sinful nature to choose a convenient time to turn us from unrighteousness to repentance and holiness, that convenient time would actually never come. Thus, the lofty words of advice of keeping everyday holy alike turns out in reality to be keeping no day holy at all.
Therefore, if the Church provides us with a season of drawing closer to God through kneeling in prayer with fasting, we ought to make use of this opportunity. The cares as well as the fascinations of the world around are such that they will certainly choke the little seeds of the gospel in us. So, let us admit that our souls have become sluggish, careless, and indifferent to godliness. Let us admit that we are in need of reanimating our piety, increasing our spiritual fervor, and taking them to a higher level in the service of God as well as fellow human beings. If we confess, there is hope for us. If we repent, there is grace in abundance for us. The problem is not that we make mistakes and are prone to sinning; rather, the problem is not admitting that we are on the wrong path as Dieter F. Uchtdorf once said: “The heavens will not be filled with those who never made mistakes but with those who recognized that they were off course and who corrected their ways to get back in the light of gospel truth.” Let me therefore urge you to make use of the Lenten season to repent as I close with this meaningful quote:
“The church is not a theological classroom. It is a conversion, confession, repentance, reconciliation, forgiveness and sanctification center, where flawed people place their faith in Christ, gather to know and love him better, and learn to love others as he designed.”
― Paul David Tripp, Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands: People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of Change.