“Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD, and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.”  — Ezekiel 18:31

For whatever reason, Old Testament readings are the most challenging for me to put my head around. However, this verse and what precedes it, are pretty straightforward.

The Lord’s message is simple: those that sin shall die; those that turn away from sin shall live.

My Lenten Challenge

During the season of Lent, we are called to turn away from sin, to repent for our sins. It is a time to reflect on our lives and cultivate new behaviors. To cast away the old bad habits and create new habits. It’s a sort of spiritual spring cleaning if you will.

I wrote earlier this week about breaking bad relationship habits. My relationship with my oldest son has been my focus during this Lenten season. I work every day to let him be the young man he needs to be. I am trying to be “hands off.”  Our relationship over the past couple of years has been less than smooth. He is very much like me and is challenging his boundaries every day. I pray that God grant me the wisdom to continue to guide him gently in the future.

I never realized just how difficult raising a family could be. Every child presents their own unique joys and challenges. I can recognize that they have taught me quite a few things about myself as well. There is always some aspect of parenting that they show me that I can improve upon. It is a mutually beneficial relationship. I pray that by the time my daughter is a teenager, we have a better handle on things. (I know, “good luck with that!”)

What sins are you holding on to that you could cast away and “make a new heart and a new spirit” for yourselves? What areas of your spiritual life could use a spring cleaning? What are new habits you’d like to develop?