Meditation written by Cathy Tamsberg.
Read by Kevin Neiley.
Today’s passage from Luke is the story of the temptations of Jesus. (Luke 4:1-13) It tells the tale of his forty days in the wilderness followed by three temptations by the devil. He is tempted by an opportunity to satisfy his hunger; a chance to have power over all the kingdoms of the world; and by pressure to prove that his God will save him. The devil even quotes Scripture to him in repeating the Psalm 91 promise that “they will bear you up so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.” The key to the passage and Jesus’ ability to withstand the temptations is in the opening sentence of the chapter, where it says, “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan…” He was full of the Holy Spirit, which had descended upon him at his baptism. Full. Not empty.
How often in our lives do we succumb to the temptation to do things we probably shouldn’t or neglect things we should probably do because we are running on empty? Stressed, exhausted, worn out, on overload—whatever term you use to describe it. Our culture encourages us to function in overdrive and it takes tremendous self-control to resist the impulse to do more and more.
Lent is a time to slow down. We are coming out of winter and signs of the arrival of spring are beginning to appear. The air is fresh if we take time to breathe it in. The inner resources we need to face the challenges in our lives are available. The old hymn encouraged us to “Take time to be holy, meet oft with the Lord.” This meeting with the Holy One is what it takes to be full of the Spirit. So take time for it. It’s free for the taking.
This meditation is from “Lent: Sowing Season, Holy Time,” a collection of daily readings by Associate Pastor Cathy Tamsberg. Each day during Lent, from Ash Wednesday, February 13, 2013, to Easter Sunday, March 31, 2013, a new excerpt read by a member of the Pullen congregation will be made available. To hear each day’s reading as it is published, subscribe to Pullen’s RSS feed, or listen to the podcast in iTunes.