The prophet Isaiah extends God’s invitation to “Come now, let
us set things straight.” This is a timely Lenten message. I think
it is particularly important during Lent that we become more willing and
obedient students of God’s instruction for learning to do good. In
this passage, it is clear that learning to do good means ceasing to do evil.
It is not just a matter of learning the difference between good and evil.
The only way to wash ourselves clean of evil is to make justice our aim and
by learning just ways of living. Lent is a time to reflect on what
it means to learn just ways of living. From my perspective, the study
of cultural diversity is one way to learn about justice.
The Psalmist tells us that learning the will of God is more than
reciting the Bible and professions of faith. Lent is not just a time
to busy ourselves with outward displays of religiosity, although spiritual
disciplines that offer praise are worthy sacrifices to God. Lent is
also a time to pay particular attention to the saving power of God in our
lives. We need to let God correct us. A good student submits
themselves to correction. I think that also means being willing to
reflect on the values of our culture and whether they promote justice.
Jesus reminds me that Lent is not just about being a good student.
It is also about being a good teacher. This is especially important
to me. Jesus says we need to remember that there is but one teacher.
The rest of us are all students of that one master, the Christ.
During my Lenten journey, I am reminded that God calls me to demonstrate
discipleship as much as knowledge in teaching justice. I need to practice
more just ways of living in the world so students can follow my examples
as well as observing what I tell them about the world.
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