… and Lent begins …

I’ve been musing for days – weeks, probably – for something to do on here for Lent. I thought about posting music; I thought about Bible studies: I thought perhaps another attempt at ‘poetry’. I thought about a film a week or so for Lent (I still might do that, actually, if I can get the time). I thought about reflections on giving things up or taking things on as a discipline for the period. I thought about my frustration with how far we seem to have drifted from Jesus’ instructions on fasting, especially when it comes to fasting from social media: advertising it rather it than hiding it (the latter being what Jesus explicitly prefers).

I thought about advertising a just cause every so often for Lent. I thought about green issues, carbon fasting or recycling more. I thoughts about reading book for Lent – a Bible book or something else. I thought about using the period more intentionally to get to the gym. I thought about dieting. I thought about fasting from food once or twice a week.

I thought about chocolate, alcohol, caffeine, shaving, not shaving, my language, my thought life, television, social media, music, films. I thought about dog walks, about cooking, cleaning, saving, giving, buying presents, doing favours, being more welcoming, being more generous, being kinder.

In sum, I thought about a lot.

Then I realised that Lent had actually started, and I hadn’t noticed.

As far as I could tell, God didn’t seem to mind.

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Words In Lent’s second week

Wind whipped and sand secreted

Temptation touches the hungry soul.

Why not? Why shouldn’t?

Itself it is not wrong.

We live in grace

So he must forgive.

You need to eat, to look

To be known, to be seen.

These aren’t bad,

Aren’t dangerous,

Aren’t sins

So much as they are

Necessary in times of trial

And lack.

So extending a hand,

Swallowing a morsel,

Taking a moment,

Cutting some slack,

Temptation transforms

And is gone, replaced

By regret and satisfaction.

The point is we can’t,

The strength is weakness,

The grace found only

By knowing we’ll fail.

Listen and you’d

Hear heaven laugh

If the price wasn’t so steep.

After 40 days he was

Hungry, says the word.

Absurd, of course

He was. Still he resists,

Still he uses the word,

Still he knows himself

And who his father is.

He resists then, and later

To the point of shed

Blood that weakness

Might not be the

End and giving in

Not mean giving up.

So we give up

For 4o days a year

To remind and renew.

Or we take on

To be more like

Him who took

On flesh, being

In very nature

God, not considering

Equality is something

To be grasped.

 

Also in this series: 

Words at the start of Lent