Lent begins tomorrow. (Will you just give it a try?)

Jesus & The Cross

I grew up in a church tradition that did not take seriously the Christian Church Calendar. Even as I went to college and moved into communities that took some level of tradition more seriously (which was usually limited to quoting Puritans and Reformers in sermons), the Church Calendar wasn’t that big of a deal. It was seen as something sort-of cool that could be incorporated into the already established life of the Church; a buffet from which leaders could pick and choose some aspects that might be helpful in organizing some sermon series or songs. But it certainly wasn’t seen as something that a church should actually incorporate itself into, or build it’s own rhythm around.

I’ve had the privilege of having this paradigm rocked the past several years at my church, and have fallen in love with the Church calendar. It influences much of the rhythm and timbre of my everyday life–both ecclesial and otherwise. I find such life in living within a stream of thought that was not simply created within the past generation by baptizing modern Western American cultural ideas.

I love finding myself as embedded within the cloud of witnesses that have gone before me as possible–even those I may disagree with passionately and fundamentally. Because, at the end of the day, they are my family, and families have traditions. Sure, you can be “that guy” that does his own thing and doesn’t participate in the family rhythms, but where’s the life in that?

Continue reading

Hey! It’s Still Easter!

When I had appendicitis last week, our preaching pastor visited me in the hospital. Having missed the service that Sunday–the first after Easter Sunday–I asked him what new sermon series he had started, now that Easter was over.

He looked at me a little surprised (as I’ve been so into liturgy and the Church Calendar the past couple of years) and informed me of something that I had apparently missed:

Easter is an entire season that is 50 days long.

(Wikipedia confirms.) Oh why do we shorten our time to rejoice and celebrate? This season is our excuse to go crazy and be joyful, bold, secure, and confident before our God and this world.

We have 33 more days before we celebrate Pentecost.
Continue reading