Chapter-a-Day Matthew 4

Angels Ministering to Christ in the Wilderness
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 Jesus prepared for the Test by fasting forty days and forty nights. Matthew 4:2 (MSG)

In the wee hours of the morning, in the twilight between sleeping and waking, it struck me that we are in the season of Lent, when followers of Jesus prepare their hearts for the celebration of His death and resurrection. I hadn’t given Lent much thought.

I don’t know why that thought would rise out of my half-conscious brain, and I found it a moment of synchronicity that today’s chapter was about Jesus’ preparation for an hour temptation in the wilderness. Jesus’ ministry was bookended by tests: His testing in the wilderness and His testing in the Garden of Gethsemane. He prepared for this spiritual test with physical deprivation.

In a culture of abundance, willful deprivation is a strange concept to most of us. My experience, however, is that there is a relationship between physical appetites and spiritual power. There is something about the satiation of our physical wants and needs that dulls our spiritual awareness. When we stuff our physical appetites, our spirit is buried under a blanket of momentary, false contentment.

Today, I’m thinking about the condition of my heart in relation to Lent, and the current state of my own physical appetites. I’m meditating on what I need to do about either, about both.

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3 thoughts on “Chapter-a-Day Matthew 4”

  1. Hey Tom, I like the post, but more importantly, I was ecstatic to wake up to find someone had linked to one of my blog posts! You’re my first link, and I was really just curious about how you found my post. So yeah, thanks for linking to me; it feels pretty good to see that someone I do not know at all linked to my writing. Thanks!

    1. No problem at all Ben. Your post was suggested by Zemanta. It’s kind of a free blogging reference machine. As you write it suggests photos, links and tags which you can choose from. Your post was one of the “related posts” suggested, and I was intrigued by your title and your thoughts. It was kind of a healthy antithesis of my own heart yesterday and I thought it might be an interesting contrast for my handful of faithful readers.

      It’s great to “link up.” Blog on!

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