Carnival is the three day period preceding the beginning of Lent, the Sunday, Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. The Tuesday before Ash Wednesday is called Shrove Tuesday, also known as Mardi Gras which means “Fat Tuesday”, contrasting the fasting during Lent. This is usually a period of celebration and a festival before the fasting during the season of Lent.
For Mardi Gras I decided to host a pancake breakfast for a small group of friends. We celebrated the coming year, talking about our goals and desire for our families, our jobs, ministry, etc. It was definitely a time of “feasting”! I found myself over and over thanking God for the richness of my life. I have so much to be thankful for. And as I approach this Lenten season I am aware of ALL that God has done in my life lately. But I’m also aware of the ways that I have tried to live on my own, without His direction, and choose my own way. And I can tell you that hasn’t gotten me very far. Shrove Tuesday comes from the practice of shriving, or the confession and absolution of sin. I took some time today to ensure that I began preparing myself for the next 46 days, to fast, pray and give. But more on that tomorrow.
For now I’ll leave you with a reflection on Scripture and a song that I have listened to over and over today.
Shrove Tuesday Reflection:
Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song. For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods. In his hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land. Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care. Today, if only you would hear his voice, “Do not harden your hearts as you did at Meribah, as you did that day at Massah in the wilderness, where your ancestors tested me; they tried me, though they had seen what I did. For forty years I was angry with that generation; I said, ‘They are a people whose hearts go astray, and they have not known my ways.’ So I declared on oath in my anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.’” Psalm 95