Friday, 18 March 2011

OF FAITH and REPENTANCE: A Lenten Reflection

by Earlie Doriman
I have been brought up to a strong Christian faith and I believed that Jesus suffered and died for the sinfulness of humankind. As a believer, I know that I have a contribution to his death, being a sinner myself.

As a child I was taught to stay away from sins, pray everyday, be polite to the elders, respect parents and others, go to church every Sunday, do not steal, share what you have, read the bible, say the angelus, and many other sort of religious obligations attached to a Christian way of life. My religion teachers in my primary and secondary years taught me to memorize many prayers, which fortunately, some are still residing in my memory cells. The biblical stories and the parables that have further influenced my belief, have given so much foundation to my religious conviction. Yet, I am still a sinner and I continue to sin every day.

I sin everyday because I get angry. I sin because I am impatient. I sin because I could not always avoid sinful thoughts. I sin because I get jealous. I sin because of my angst. And I sin because there are times I get selfish and unreasonable. I sin not because I promote injustice to others. I sin not becasue I am a criminal. But I sin because I am human.

Around the world, the Lenten season reminds all Christians about the sufferings of Christ. It takes us back to how he surrendered himself to the Father in his few final words while hanging helplessly upon the cross. What does this mean to us now? What would it mean to look deeply into our sins and turn away from them so we could follow Christ the way he wanted? I always tried to be so pleasing to God, but my limitations as a person pulled me backwards and the guilt of sin distracts me every time in my prayers. It is indeed a struggle to give ourselves purely to God and it is just frustrating to realize how out of reach the life of godliness is.

My faith tells me that God does not expect us to be perfect. He only wants us to admit how weak we become to deal with the worldly things and he keeps reminding us to ask forgiveness. He only wants us to declare about our feeble emotions. The Lenten season is the best time to unburden oneself and surrender all the guilt feelings to Him. I believed it is the renewal of life as Christ’s follower and the determination to live a completely new beginning as a Christian faithful.

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