After 45 years of rest. “The Israelites again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, worshiping the Baals and the Astartes, the gods of Aram, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the Ammonites, and the gods of the Philistines. Thus they abandoned the LORD, and did not worship him. So the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel,… so that Israel was greatly distressed. So the Israelites cried to the LORD, saying, ‘We have sinned against you, because we have abandoned our God and worshipped the Baals.’ And the LORD said to the Israelites, ‘Did I not deliver you? … I delivered you out of their hand. Yet you have abandoned me and worshipped other gods; therefore I will deliver you no more. Go and cry to the gods whom you have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your distress. And the Israelites said to the LORD, ‘We have sinned; do to us whatever seems good to you; but deliver us this day!’ So they put away the foreign gods from among them and worshipped the LORD; and he could no longer bear to see Israel suffer.” Judges 10:6-7a, 9b-16
Here we are on Holy Saturday, the last day of this Lenten season, the day before Easter, the day of ultimate resurrection of The Savior, the day of deliverance from sin once and for all. Will I continue to focus on God, will I continue to leave behind the sins God has revealed during this season, or will I return to them, pick them up again, worship a false god? Or will live in the light of deliverance that only God provides? Why would I return to powerlessness when God has broken this cycle by sending his son to die on the cross, to be buried in a tomb but ultimately be resurrected (the ultimate deliverance) to the right hand of the Father where he continues to declare, not guilty! LOVE stirs God’s deep compassion and leads to unmerited divine action – we call that GRACE! O that I always walk in God’s grace, live God’s grace and share God’s grace with all others from this day forward and forevermore, that I not waste another Lenten season!