Each year seems to bring more activities, more demands, more things taking up space in our lives. This makes sense since most of us continue to meet more people, learn new things, get involved in a new project or activity --- of course our lives are fuller. But does “fuller” mean richer and deeper, or simply more crowded?
Suddenly (it seems like) Lent is almost upon us and we have one more thing “To Do” in participating. But Lent can actually be a time to allow us more “space” in our lives, and more time – if we are intentional.
Traditionally people gave something up for Lent – they “fasted” from something, usually food. Fasting, or intentionally not eating or consuming something can help us carve out space for prayer, for reflection, for contemplation and silence. Or perhaps it creates space for connection and relationship if we purposefully use the resource that otherwise would have been a meal (a resource of time and money) and intentionally meet with others or give what we would have spent to those in need. Or perhaps the fasting is from an activity like watching TV or being on Facebook.
But perhaps you are not completely giving something up, or fasting. Perhaps you choose to do simpler meals so that focus is on family and spending time together, or even inviting guests to share your meals. A simpler way of life or a specific practice during Lent can help us reclaim some of the time and energy of our busy lives so that we can focus on God, learn something about prayer, practice our faith in a specific way, learn a spiritual discipline, or take on a new way of being. Whatever you choose, know that the very act of choosing a practice, a discipline, or a fast will help you get out of your own head and into a space where you can hear God. And don’t we all need that?
There are plenty of resources to help you – whatever way you choose to go.
I was inspired by this article Lent, What You Need to Do, so check this out for a classic look at Lent. Then check out my resource page under Curriculm/programs, then look at Seasons of the Church with loads more resources.