Psalm 97:12 Rejoice in the LORD, you who are righteous, and praise His Holy Name.
Today is Shrove Tuesday and usually our church gathers this evening for a Pancake Supper. It’s a great time of food, fellowship, and fun. Pancakes and sausages are served to our families, and then we have a sing-along. We often sing old spirituals like ‘O When the Saints,’ ‘Down By the Riverside,’ and ‘Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.’
I love the party atmosphere at the church and I think it’s a much better tradition than the brazenness of Mardi Gras parades and Fat Tuesday fiascoes that take place all over the world. People go overboard and turn the whole celebration into a drunken orgy, instead of taking time to gather together for one last community meal before Lent begins.
A lot of Christians ignore the feast because of the all night partying that is sadly associated with it, but I believe that our families and kids should get the opportunity to experience the religious side of the celebration and show that faith can be full of fun.
Wherever you are today, take time to praise God for the life we have, the food we eat, the friends we know, the families we love, and the faith that we cherish. Mardi Gras then becomes a feast of Mighty Grace, which is something more worthwhile and everlasting than anything that New Orleans, Rio, or anywhere else has to offer this day.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, we thank You for this day of celebration where we cast off our sins and look forward to Your coming sacrifice. We praise You for the forty days of faith that begin tomorrow with Ash Wednesday and end on Easter. Help us to prepare our hearts and homes to welcome You as our Resurrected Savior and Everlasting Lord. In Your Holy Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to comment on today’s message, please send him an email to email@example.com.