I admit that I'd never really even heard of lent until I was over twenty years old. I didn't have any understanding actually of the role of sacrifice and self-denial in Christian theology. The metaphor of being in the desert meant nothing to me.
I remember March 1991; I'd not missed an Easter service in my life. We were a very regular three time-a-week church family growing up, so it wasn't just about Easter, but there was still that sense and understanding of something special about Easter. This was my first year of college, and I had grown ever so spiteful of my faith. I wasn't backsliding, I was consciously and intentionally working to destroy my faith. I didn't want it. It was worthless to me. March had been amazing. I'd travelled to Florida with new found friends, hosted several guests on our return, and saw them on their way Easter morning. I'd gotten so caught up in the excitement that I didn't even know it was Easter until noon.
I took a walk by myself. The first time I'd really let myself be alone without some sort of distraction for a while. On my walk I sensed a great feeling of emptiness and despair, but I could not shed thoughts of Jesus. Looking back I feel like I knew that I would be running from God for quite some time, but He was holding on and watching all the way. I feel like I have a better understanding of being in the desert because of that experience and the years that followed, and for some reason, the video posted below brought all of the memories of that days experience rushing back to my brain.