Ash Wednesday/Lenten Collect
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hatest nothing that thou hast made, and dost forgive the sins of all those who are penitent; Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Collect Prayer for the First Sunday in Lent
O LORD, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights; Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness, and true holiness, to thy honour and glory, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
In the Collect Prayer for the First Sunday in Lent, we pray in thanksgiving for Jesus fasting in the wilderness for forty days and forty nights for our sakes. It is through His perfect works of love that we can pray in the Collect prayer for the Season of Lent that we “may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.” His fasting for our sakes ended with rejecting the temptations of Satan. By not falling as Adam and Eve fell in the Garden to the Devil’s temptation, Jesus is forever our perfect representative to God the Father to be our perfect sacrifice for our sins, granting us a remission and forgiveness of sins that is not temporary, but perfect and eternal. When we fast for the season of Lent or for needed occasions in life, it is profitable that we examine the reasons for our fasting. Yes, fasting as a spiritual discipline is helpful in building us up in the faith. To avoid falling into the error of thinking too highly of ourselves in such disciplines, we need to consider fasting and praying for others. If we can put others first in our spiritual disciplines, the benefit for us is great. Jesus fasted for our sakes. Let us pray for God’s help and grace to dedicate our fasting and spiritual disciplines to God and for others.