"What are you giving up?" That is the typical question we associate with this season before Easter and implies that Lent is all about what we can't do this season. However perhaps that is not the ideal way for us to enter into a spiritual practice.
As this video describes the focus of Lent isn't what we do or don't do in our personal observance - the focus is on our relationship with God. What might we give up - or take on - that strengthens our awareness of God in our life? What new practices might we embrace that help us embrace ourselves and one another? What ancient practices might we try on to help us see with the eyes of our heart? Lent is a period of enrichment and focus so that our joy on Easter is felt all the more.
Perhaps you would like to engage scripture more. Then consider the book Meeting God in Paul: Reflections of the Season of Lent, by Rowan Williams. We will meet to discuss this book as a part of our Bible Study group in Lent (Tuesdays at 10am). If you can't make the group, consider reading the book on your own. We hear Paul's letters almost every Sunday in church. In this book, Williams helps us see the life of Paul and how the community of his time shaped his proclamation of the gospel. It also includes daily reflections to pray with in Lent.
Perhaps you would like to pray more, but find it hard to make time or know even what to do. Then consider praying the Daily Office each day from your computer or phone. The Mission of St. Clare website hosts the Daily Office on their website where you can either read along or listen to the prayers and scripture readings for the day.
Another excellent daily prayer website is Pray As You Go. This is a Jesuit resource that offers a guided meditation on the scripture reading for the day. With music and questions it is an easy way to learn the ancient practice lectio divina whereby we pray our way into the scripture. You can even download their app to listen on your phone.
There are a myriad of ways in which we can choose to renew, reconnect and reboot this season as we deepen our relationship with God through neighbors and ourselves. Blessings and Peace, Arianne+