This Southern world that I now live in celebrates something known as Mardi Gras. In the North, we literally called it Fat Tuesday. It'sa day of excess, of parties, before a time of pentitence. It's a day of craziness before Ash Wednesday.
I've never attended a church that applies Ash crosses to foreheads on Wednesday. But I'm aware of the ritual. I'm aware that it's a outward sign of inward repentence. I'm aware that it's the begining of Lent.
Lent is a season that has gone by in the past without too much notice, for me. In recent years I have participated in some special Bible studies, or gone through specific devotionals. I've even written about Lent on this blog before.
But it does make me wonder, what should I be doing in a year of Katergazomai? If I'm working out my faith in a new, intentional way this year, how should I approach Ash Wednesday? How should I approach Lent? I thought about purchasing a special Bible Study, as I have in the past, but I'm already two Bible studies deep in my life right now. So what else? I've thought about actually eating Fish on Fridays, it's something Catholic's do during Lent, and a practice my family could pretty easily take up without much trouble. I've also wondered about giving something up for this Lenton season, but I'm just not sure....
I think for one, during Lent, I'd like to pick up one of my journals again. It's a practice I fall in and out of, depending on the season, and how busy my outside life is.
February in The Influence Network was on Bible Literacy. I loved the extra resources, and the extra podcast. It was all really encouraging for me. I struggle in Bible Studies at times, feeling as if I almost know too much. I've grown up in the church, attended Christian schools, and read plentiful books, so I know lots of random things about the Bible. I know a lot, so I'm afraid that I'll come across as a know it all. At the same time, Scripture truly is living and breathing. There's always more to learn. And so I want to encourage myself to grow in new ways. I want to take advantage of those in between times. I want to seek out what He may have for me this year. I want to learn. And for me, that might means journaling, taking apart scirpture, looking up verses in commentaries, looking up the original Hebrew and Greek. Really learning the meat of it all. That excites me, and I always want to be excited when I delve into scripture.
I also want to embrace contentment, letting God fulfill me right here, right now. Living fully in the life He's given me, but also opening up my heart to new friendships, new opportunities to write, new opportunitiees to reach out and love others. But to do that, I feel like I need to delve in. And for me, that begins with a pen, a Bible, and a journal. Will you join me? This blog is such a tiny corner of the world. But I'd love to share what I'm learning with you.
How do you approach Lent? Do you give something up? Focus on reading certain scirptures? I hope, whatever your approach, that you're waiting with anticipation for Easter to come.