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My Learning This year

5 April 2010 in Uncategorized

Simply Put:

Lent is the place where we can live in and recognize our failures and still remember and know something is on the other side.

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A Slow Journey

13 March 2010 in Uncategorized

Well, as usual Lent did not turn out as I had hoped. After spending the last week sick I have been reminded that Lent is not about accomplishment, but about focus. Its not about the destination, but remembering that we need to focus on Christ instead of letting the circumstances of life to control our focus. As always, regardless of what I do or try to do, God is always speaking volumes to me when I stop to focus each Lent season.

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The thing that binds it all together

10 March 2010 in Uncategorized

A good video that was sent to me this week. I remember Louie giving this talk and I have always found such great meaning in what he has to say. Its a great reminder about what Lent is all about–the thing that binds us together. Its a reminder for us as to what Lent is all about!

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Lenten Failure

2 March 2010 in Uncategorized

This was going to be the year that I mastered the lent resolutions that I made. I was off to my best start ever and very committed to what I had planned. Then life happened. Too much to do at work, too many hours, so much schoolwork. I did not make it. I am still going to seek these things out, and hopefully it was just a 5 day setback. I did realize something today however. Maybe lent is not just about the things we add or subtract to focus on God. Maybe its not just about a time to reflect and prepare for the resurrection.
Today, it struck me that maybe part of the purpose of lent, and our lenten story is that we need to embrace our failure. After all, who bats 100% for lent anyway. In the day to day living of life, we do not reflect on anything, including our failures and short comings. It is not a common posture or act in our culture to really reflect on our imperfection, and our need for God.
So I wonder if that is part of the lent story. For me, this year, it is. Lent is serving as a reminder that I cannot do it all, I cannot do it alone—I need God. I am not perfect and do not need to live in excuses, denial, or guilt over my imperfection. Maybe lent is to remind us that we can never do it all, and we need God.

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At Peace

22 February 2010 in Uncategorized

Simply put; I am at peace. It does not feel temporary and while it is enhanced in the Lenten season, it is not about lent. Perhaps all of the hard work and all of the negative situations I have faced have brought about a transformation that allows my soul to be still.

I love the stillness found in the focus and reflection of the lent season.

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Great Lent Article

20 February 2010 in Uncategorized

Click this link for a wonderful article on lent from a dear friend and colleague. It is a must read!

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in awe

20 February 2010 in Uncategorized

Well, there has been quick clarity as to what practices will happen and what ones will not. The evening/morning fast  and the early rising will not, but the others are all going to work; I am confident of this. It has been an amazing four days of the lent season. God is already speaking and transforming me as I have dreamed and visioned about my own life, youth ministry, and the church. God is speaking, God is present and for the first time in many years I can see all of my greatest dreams (and the even bigger ones that I cannot fathom that God has for me) happening. Speak God, for your servant is listening. I am ready to be amazed!

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Practices for Lent

19 February 2010 in Uncategorized

Its a big list this year…thinking through my practices for lent. We will see how much success I have; and I am always thankful for Sunday’s-the mini-resurrections.

 

  1.     To do a lenten devotional, Reliving the Passion.
  2.     To have a lent blog as a way of journaling.
  3.     To fast each Wednesday.
  4.     To get into the habit of getting up earlier to pray.
  5.     To not snack after 8pm, and to wait until 8am to eat.
  6.     To worship at least 1 time at Synagogue & Orthodox church.
  7.     To focus on getting back into my personal rhythm.

 

 

 

 

 

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And so it begins…

18 February 2010 in Uncategorized

By time I got my heart in a lenten posture yesterday, it was clear that today was the first real and full day of Lent for me. It has been a great day. Each month I take a day away with God. I make it a part of my work, for my work must flow out of Christ in me, and if I do not take the time to refill, then my cup will not overflow and I will not be able to be the pastor I am called to be. So today, I spent the day mostly at my favorite coffee shop in Old Colorado City. It’s a sacred place. I did not do a lot special, my normal daily routine with God, with some lenten practices and some driving around to move my son from one place to another. It always takes me a bit to settle into the day as my mind races and I make notes about work, home, and God. Today was a good opportunity to simple be and to listen. A deep sense of peace in my soul as I sit here and continue what has been an uneventful day with God; nothing profound or life changing, but a time to simply be in The Presence.

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Ashes

17 February 2010 in Uncategorized

Lent officially began today. There is not a particular time that lent starts, but today is Ash Wednesday. I have always found lent to be deeply meaningful, so much so that I anticipate it each year. Today I found myself very unsettled. I was not sure of the source of the unsettlement, but I sure was frustrated with it. It almost felt as if I was not ready for lent to start, which was a very odd feeling for me. As it got closer to the service, my heart settled. I settled on some ideas or goals for lent to be a part of my lenten rhythm. As the service began, it was clear. For me, lent cannot start until it is time for the ashes. The physical symbol of the beginning of lent was what I needed. The use of ashes at face value could seem like a strange tradition, however it is very deep. The ashes cause us to reflect; to reflect on who we really are, where we come from and what we would be without Jesus Christ. The ashes prepare us for this journey and they represent an invitation to contemplation. All I needed were the ashes.