But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.
II Peter 3:18
If you are like me, Lent is not only a time to reflect and to pray, or give something up, but it's a season when you get asked, "Presbyterians do Lent?" And other fun questions, like, "Do you give things up? Do Sundays count? Do you eat meat on Fridays?" All good questions. I usually answer with, "Sometimes, yes, and not around my mom." (Mom still does the fish Fridays because of her half-Catholic upbringing.)
Do you give something up? Is it a big deal? Do you make a big deal of it so everyone knows? Have you found the practice to be helpful or spiritual or informative? I found after many years that sometimes giving something up was meaningful, sometimes frustrating. And the same was true for my friends and family. Them giving up foods and drinks sometimes unintentionally caused problems for the rest of us for weeks who planned meals with them. Them giving up social media meant I might not speak with them for those weeks.
I began to experiment with taking on a spiritual practice during Lent, at the urging of other pastors and educators. If you've never done that before, I recommend trying it this year. Start today. You can write letters. Paul and James and many early Church leaders were fond of exercising their spiritual gift for encouraging others in this way. It's equally, and perhaps more encouraging in this day and age. Try to write one every day. Or, incorporate prayer into your life more. Don't pray at lunch currently? Breakfast? In public? At bedtime? What about in traffic or in line at the bank or DMV? There are even apps that can help remind you to pray at specific times.
There are also opportunities here at church this Lent. Our Christian Educator, Allison has set up stations here at the church for various forms of prayer. Additionally, the Labyrinth will be set up in the Youth Garage this weekend. If you would like to make use of it during your time at the prayer vigil or before or after worship, you are welcome.
I hope you will consider using the time of Lent to reflect on your own spiritual formation and give up or take on something that will strengthen your walk with the Lord.
Prayer for Today
Lord, help me to make space in my daily life for a closer walk with you. Amen.