Lent 2020

As we embark on our 40 day Lenten Journey, many of us may practice the Lenten discipline of giving up something. One of my daughters has decided to give up social media for Lent. I think she will be a much less stressed and happier person because of it! Other people will give up desserts or sodas or some other food or beverage. Many of our Catholic and Episcopalian brothers and sisters will give up eating red meat on Fridays.
 
I have clergy friends who instead of giving something up decide to add something to their observance. One of them purchases a can of food for each day of Lent. At the end of the 40 days, these food items are given to the local food pantry. Another friend makes a weekly visit to a retirement home.
 
I have two suggestions for practices that you can add that would help Lent be a meaningful time of spiritual growth. The first is scripture reading. Pick one Gospel and read a half a chapter a day. Add to this one of the proverbs from the Old Testament that corresponds with the day of the month. Before you read, ask that God would open your heart to be taught something in your reading. This practice will take less than 10 minutes a day and will be encouraging to you.
 
The second suggestion is to choose a person who will be your Lenten prayer buddy. Ask that person to commit to praying for you for 40 days during Lent as you will commit to praying for that person. If you want, ask for specific prayer requests. Other wise, just use this simple prayer:

Lord, grant (name) and me the grace today to commit our lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ without reservation; and furthermore grant (name) and me the grace to know your strength and your guidance this day.
 
If you do any or all of these intentional practices, you will find the next 40 days to be enriching to your faith and a great preparation for your Easter celebration on April 12th.
 
May each of you have a holy Lent!
 
Your friend and pastor,
Pastor Lee