Next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, which kicks off Lent, the time of year in which we our sins and shortcomings weigh on our minds and shoulders a little more than usual, that we might feel their sting, and that might propel us to Christ.
Lent is always a very meaningful time for me spiritually. It is my most fruitful time of blogging and meditating, and I hope that today is similar. This is probably because I’m wired to be extra sensitive to the quieter, subtler movements of my own heart.
I can also be prone to despair over my inability to change or grow, but even in the midst of the difficulty and darkness of this season, there’s always the dawn of Easter ever-more cresting upon the Lenten horizon.
Historically, there have been many ways that the Church had engaged in this time, and so there is great freedom in how we might do that. This is how I’m engaging in Lent this season:
- I will be attending my church’s Ash Wednesday service next week (if you’re in Philly, you should join us too!)
- I will be doing my church’s Lent prayerbook (when it’s posted, I’ll link to it.)
- Last year, I tried giving a bit of money every day to a different organization (it was fruitful). This year, I want to spend Lent giving money consistently and sacrificially to a few organizations, yet to be determined.
- I will be preparing my mind and heart for my Guatemala trip, reading and writing on non-profit and development work, trying to see what it might mean to think “Christianly” about these things.
- Another Lent Mixtape! (Get the Epiphany Mixtape before it’s gone!)
- I’ll try (at least a few times) to go to a local Monastery in the area of days of silence, prayer, and meditation.
- I will give going to Confession a try and see what that’s like (I’ll keep you in the know!)
- I’m thinking this year’s “Lent blog series” will be “Reflections on Repentance.” More to come.
- And lastly, and most difficultly, I will be giving up meat for Lent! Pray for me.
So that’s how I will be spending these 40-ish days. Hopefully, my annual hopes and anticipations for great change and growth will be met with some of those gracious and rare moments God gives us, when we actually get to see it.
But, more importantly, I want to hear how YOU might be engaging in this time. Brainstorm, ask each other questions, and throw out your creative ideas for how to hold a Holy Lent.