You know what I love MOST about having a tribe???
When you share that you are trying something new, they are the first to jump up and shout their support. I mean WOW to the best tribe ever over my decision to go to an Ash Wednesday Service and participate in Lent....both for the first time.
I have been inundated with information, reading suggestions, blog posts, books, text messages, prayers, and I am overwhelmed..in the best of ways. THANK YOU!
One of the pieces of information I received called the observance of Lent "40 Days in the Wilderness" to which I laughed because I understand that COMPLETELY. I have come to appreciate in the past few years the study of the Israelites time in the wilderness and relating that to periods of my own spiritual walk. So to now experience Lent and look at the wilderness concept through the eyes of Jesus' temptation for 40 days in the wilderness after his baptism...well, I am SO up for that.
I am also possibly a little scared....;)
For those of you who are also experiencing Lent for the first time, I hope you enjoy these posts and find them informational...but also funny. It is important for me to maintain my sense of humor as God takes me deeper and deeper into my walk with him. HE clearly has a sense of humor. So...please do not take my lightheartedness at any time as disrespectful. I take all of this VERY serious, but I am also trying to present my experience in the most transparent light. Growth is hard. Growth is sticky and icky. Growth can be funny. Mostly though...growth is REAL. I think it is time to take the blinders off (or rose-colored glasses as I often refer to them) and share the truth of the day-to-day of our walks (as broken people) with God (who is sovereign) in this very broken world.
Tonight I thought I might share some of what I am reading which was recommended since these scriptures deal with Jesus' temptation in the wilderness and it was as the 40 day temptation of Jesus that is the basis of the observances of Lent: Mark 1:12-13; Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13; Hebrews 2:18, and Hebrews 4:15.
Also, I have decided to give up a couple of things and also take something up. The take something up concept is something I learned from a couple of different friends that some do to aid in their spiritual growth; one today also gave me a list I could choose from. #bless
The main thing is that I am consciously observing this 40 (plus 6 when you include Sundays) days leading up to Easter. As someone who has NEVER done this and already in love with the whole thing, I am fighting the urge to regret years lost not experiencing it all. That is pointless though...the good news is that now I know. *Deep Sigh*
Isn't it funny how once you notice something new you see it everywhere?!?! It feels suddenly like the whole world is doing Lent.
Maybe that is just me...
Oh...so here is the funny for the day...my business partner walked in my office this morning and was talking before he hit the door and as I looked up, he stopped mid-sentence and said, "It looks like you didn't get it off (pointing at the remnants of the ash cross placed on my forehead last night)." I said, "Well funny story, I saw this graphic today of the different ways these are placed and there is one really bold, dark one that is called "Father's Revenge" guess which one I got??" Obnoxious laughter. So...the story is I scrubbed my face, as I always do, and when I looked in the mirror as I dried my face off, I noticed it was still there. I use high power scrubber, I think we are all clear about what this means.
I am so grateful for the experience of Ash Wednesday and Lent. I am grateful for new experiences. An amazing tribe of people encouraging me as I do something new. Mostly I am grateful for a God full of bountiful grace who is most certainly quite amused as I walk through this...I have a Good Good Father.
Are you observing Lent? Any tips for me? I would love to hear your experiences (past or present). I am loving learning about all of this...please share.
Sunshine Dreams to You ~ Today and Every Day! :)