Name: Benjamin Seo
Lenten Commitment: Write handwritten letters for Lent.
I am a writer. I always have been. There is a flow and rhythm, melody and harmony to well-written prose that, when left to the imagination of the reader, conveys weight and levity, hope and sympathy in a way that that common speech is simply too familiar to replicate.
And in a world where this is increasingly rare, there is an allure to the idea that someone took the time to write a note on the delicate and soft texture of paper just for you.
It is through the conjunction of these ideas that Letters for Lent came to be.
In the three years that I have been doing this, I have had people from various areas of my life sign up for a letter and in the little notes they leave as they sign up, I have heard their stories – stories, ultimately, about their weakness.
Some share about their struggle with anxiety or doubt. Others talk about their health problems or family issues. And others still are just looking for a friend to be with them in a time of loneliness.
And as I read these stories, my heart breaks for them because I know how that feels. I still face those struggles. And I know the overwhelming pressure that comes from having to put on a smile or a brave face while it seems these struggles will consume you.
So I share my stories with them. Stories of my many weaknesses and of my struggles. To let them know that, despite how the details are different, the arc of our lives are the same. That, though we teach ourselves that we must be self-sufficient and strong, the world will quickly disavow us of these notions. And so we must embrace our weakness and take it to where it can be made whole: Jesus.
It was Jesus who, looking upon our weakness, came down from his place of power and authority to become the weakest among us. It was He who, upon living with us, died for us to show us the way. And it is He who, upon conquering death, continues to sympathize with us in our weakness and guide us with His strength.
And ultimately, I think that is what Lent is about: acknowledging our own weakness to trust in God. And this is how I believe God is working through Letters for Lent. I get to share of how Jesus covers my sin and weakness with others and, in turn, am reminded of how good God is.
He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
English Standard Version
This post is a part of DSYG’s Lent Reflections series meant to educate and inspire readers on the season of Lent and its value in any Christian’s relationship with Christ. For more information on this series, click here.
To read more posts in this year’s series, click here.