By Darrell Belrose of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
All this is from God, who reconciled with us through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, Christ reconciled the world to God, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us. —2 Corinthians 5:18–19 NRSV, adapted
As I was growing up, I heard my friends talk about Lent. I thought it had to do with giving up something for Easter. I paid no attention to this until recently when I became intrigued with its real meaning and the blessings that Lent had in store for me. I discovered Lent was a 40-day period, plus five mini-Easters. This season leads up to celebrating Christ’s resurrection on Easter Sunday. I became excited about my opportunity to prepare myself for this “Feast of the Resurrection”!
I appreciate Community of Christ’s emphasis on the Lenten season. Through the weekly themes and journey, the church invites me to walk with my community and friends. I take joy in intentionally “carving out time for Christ” in my daily walk. It gives me many opportunities to reflect on my spiritual life and my lifestyle throughout this season of preparation. I have found that this intentionality has not only enriched my life but has blessed me with many opportunities to practice mindfulness and gratitude. I see the value in our Mission Prayer that many of us pray to be a blessing to others. I have been encouraged to be more discerning of God in my life as I ask:
God, where will your spirit lead today?
Help me be fully awake and ready to respond.
Grant me courage to risk something new
And become a blessing of your love and peace!
I am delighted and grateful for our church’s leadership in continually enabling us, the membership and friends of the church, to seek for transformative ways. Here we can celebrate the Christian calendar in various ways that we have not focused on in the past. The Lenten season has been one of those gifts for me which I look forward to with renewed joy. I am discovering my loving God more deeply and realize where God personally calls me to go on my journey in community.
Prayer for Peace
Transforming God, help us open our minds to change which brings us closer to you. Help us see the value of disciplines that prepare us for peace.
Spiritual Practice: Praying for Leadership of the Church
An important spiritual practice for disciples is praying for members of the body of Christ, especially those who carry leadership responsibilities. Ask God to guide your awareness of people who lead the community of faith in congregations, mission centers, and the World Church. Pray for God’s outpouring of grace on each servant leader who comes to mind.
Today, God, I will carve out time for Christ.