Lent begins today. For centuries, Lent was the period when people prepared for baptism, which was held on Easter. Lent has become a time when people examine their life soberly, and turn to God. At First Mennonite, we are also going to spend time reflecting.
Our world in some ways is in a time of rapid change. Over the past 50 years (my lifetime), we’ve seen a remarkable change in technology and its accessibility. As a kid I didn’t own one toy that used batteries or plugged in. Not one. I had a doll with a ring at the back of her neck, and I could pull it and a string would come out. I would let go, and she would say, “Mama, mama.” But when I was eight, my sister received a small tape recorder as a gift from an uncle. It was a real novelty at the time. The electronic revolution had begun in the Penner home.
Tools are good. Throughout time tools have enhanced our life. But the discerning Christian needs to make choices, especially in this time when electronic tools have changed our lives. Which tools do we want to use? How much should we spend on them? How often should we use them? When should we not use them? I’m starting a five-part sermon series entitled “Enhance: Living for God in a high-tech world”.
I’d like you to look around your house this week. What technological items are in your house that you would not have found there fifty years ago? How are they enhancing your life? More importantly, the question I want you to ask yourself is, “Have they helped me be a more faithful Christian?”
p.s. In case you’re wondering, I still have the doll, but the tape recorder is long gone.
Today’s prayer: Open our eyes in this season of Lent, to see what draws us closer, and what draws us away from you. Give us courage to do something about it.