Lent Devotion for Ash Wednesday

Reading: 1 Peter 1:1–9

It is indeed meet, right, and salutary that we rejoice in this good inheritance, won for us through Jesus Christ. But it is also necessary that we suffer tribulations in this life, lest we forget or neglect this inheritance. For there are indeed many cares and pleasures which attempt to choke out this life.

Lent is a time to intensify our personal devotion, self-denial, almsgiving, and humble repentance. A time of struggling more intensely against selfishness. A time of struggling more intensely against the love of money. A time to struggle more intensely against pride.

This more intense struggle is often tiresome and burdensome, but is nevertheless necessary. Necessary so that we are not choked out by pride, the love of money, slothfulness, or conceit. So during these forty days of Lent, by the power of the Holy Spirit put these deeds to death, so that you might live (Rom. 8:13) and your faith may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the celebration of our Lord’s resurrection.

Almighty and everlasting God, You despise nothing You have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent. Create in us new and contrite hearts that, lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, we may receive from you full pardon and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Grant that I Your passion view
With repentant grieving.
Let me not bring shame to You
By unholy living.
How could I refuse to shun
Ev’ry sinful pleasure
Since for me God’s only Son
Suffered without measure? (LSB 440:4)

Simeon Cornwell (Sem IV, CTSFW)