Try this during Lent: "Be with God. Listen to him. Do what he says."
Are you ready to see God do some new things in you and through you this Easter season? We are going to put ourselves in the position to let God do what he wants with our lives by following a simple daily plan: “Be with God. Listen to him. Do what he says.”
Lent is deeply rooted in Christian history. It is a way to observe Easter as a season instead of just one day. We set aside the 40 days leading up to Easter to meditate on Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Lent is a time of the year when we focus extra energy on our spiritual lives. We walk with Jesus through the narrative of his life and commune with him. Over these 40 days, we are preparing ourselves to remember Jesus’ death and celebrate his resurrection in the deepest way possible.
What about giving up things for Lent? The point of observing Lent isn’t to give up a lot of things just for the sake of being uncomfortable. It is to take extra steps to connect with God and reach out to people around us. When we make sacrifices, like doing without food or other things, it is to make room for being more connected to God and others.
Do what he says – You are in a place of communion with God, and you have listened for his voice speaking to you through the Scriptures. What action do you feel he wants you to take? Commit to it now. Take action as soon as you can.
A Spiritual Practice for Lent (or anytime)
This Lent at Sanctuary, we are taking up a practice of loving God by being with God, listening to him, and doing what he says. We can accomplish this by taking these simple steps:
- Be with God – Set aside some time to stop the world, so to speak, and connect with God. Come to God with humility and hunger for his presence.
- Listen to God – Choose a text from the Bible. Below is a reading plan for every day of Lent. Ask two questions as you read, spending a few minutes being present with each question.
- First, think through the text. What does it say and mean? Think about the narrative as carefully as you can. Use Bible study tools if you want to.
- Second, pay attention to what is going on within you as you read the text. How does the text make you feel? Where do you resonate with the text? God may want to speak to you here. Where do you recoil from the text? God may want to speak to you here too.
The more often you do this, it will become second nature to “be with God, listen to him, and do what he says.” You will find God shaping who you are more and more. Invite others into the process of walking every day with God. Share the journey with them. And be ready for surprises! God is “able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine,” especially when we commune with him, listen to him, and obey him.
Grace and peace,
Pastor David, Sanctuary Covenant Church
Scripture Reading Plan for Lent 2011
The following readings are taken from the Anglican Church’s Book of Common Prayer. They are readings specifically designed to take Christians through the Lenten season. In following this plan, we are reading the same Scriptures as Christians all over the world throughout Lent 2011 and in many Lenten seasons of years gone by.
Wednesday, March 9 (Ash Wednesday): Luke 18:9-14
Thursday, March 10: John 1:29-34
Friday, March 11: John 1:35-42
Saturday, March 12: John 1:43-51
First Sunday of Lent, March 13: Mark 2:18-22
Monday, March 14: John 2:1-12
Tuesday, March 15: John 2:13-22
Wednesday, March 16: John 2:23-3:15
Thursday, March 17: John 3:16-21
Friday, March 18: John 3:22-36
Saturday, March 19: John 4:1-26
Second Sunday of Lent, March 20: Mark 3:31-4:9
Monday, March 21: John 4:27-42
Tuesday, March 22: John 4:43-54
Wednesday, March 23: John 5:1-18
Thursday, March 24: John 5:19-29
Friday, March 25: John 5:30-47
Saturday, March 26: John 7:1-13
Third Sunday of Lent, March 27: Mark 5:1-20
Monday, March 28: John 7:14-36
Tuesday, March 29: John 7:37-52
Wednesday, March 30: John 8:12-20
Thursday, March 31: John 8:21-32
Friday, April 1: John 8:33-47
Saturday, April 2: John 8:47-59
Fourth Sunday in Lent, April 3: Mark 8:11-21
Monday, April 4: John 6:1-15
Tuesday, April 5: John 6:16-27
Wednesday, April 6: John 6:27-40
Thursday, April 7: John 6:41-51
Friday, April 8: John 6:52-59
Saturday, April 9: John 6:60-71
Fifth Sunday in Lent, April 10: Mark 8:31-9:1
Monday, April 11: John 9:1-17
Tuesday, April 12: John 9:18-41
Wednesday, April 13: John 10:1-18
Thursday, April 14: John 10:19-42
Friday, April 15: John 11:1-27 or 12:1-10
Saturday, April 16: John 11:28-44 or 12:37-50
Sixth Sunday in Lent (Palm Sunday), April 17: Matthew 21:12-17
Monday, April 18: John 12:9-19
Tuesday, April 19: John 12:20-26
Wednesday, April 20: John 12:27-36
Thursday, April 21 (Maundy Thursday): John 17:1-11
Friday, April 22 (Good Friday): John 13:36-38 in the morning; John 19:38-42 in the evening
Saturday, April 23 (Holy Saturday): Romans 8:1-11
- Sunday, April 24 (Easter): John 1:1-18 in the morning; John 20:19-23 in the evening