Jesus went into the desert for 40 days to fast and pray. In a desert one has no choice but to be dependent on God – one is at one’s most vulnerable – naked, in the sense of defenceless. For us today in the city, in an allegorical sense, to choose to be in a desert during Lent is to choose to be mask-less or persona-less, distraction-less before God. In this desert we choose to be naked before God – entirely honest: “Here I am, Lord, this is me.”
In our desert, by choosing to be vulnerable before God we choose to trust God’s response – because God is moved by God’s overwhelming love for us. In the gaze of such love, we want to draw ever nearer to God – we want to leave behind all that gets in the way between us and God, forever.