Lent To Us

I’ve emerged from the endless task of snow shoveling (we’ve had more than 96 inches of snow so far this winter) to find that Lent starts today. These church seasons remind me of the hide-and-seek call, “Ready or not, here I come!” As usual, I am not ready, and I rarely know what to do with Lent, so I went back and read this sermon I gave three years ago on Ash Wednesday. It seems as good a place to start as any.

The Crooked Line

Several weeks ago, PW invited me to preach at the noon Ash Wednesday service at Emmanuel. My first thought, which I kept to myself, was, “Yikes! There’s no way I can be ponderous enough to write and then give an Ash Wednesday sermon.” So, of course, what I said out loud was, “Okay!”

Every time I worked on my remarks, in the days leading up to today, I kept hearing the voice of a man I interviewed recently for a letter I wrote for work. So here’s what I ended up with.

Well, here we are, perched at the beginning of the 40-day journey of Lent. You know, legend has it that explorers used to write “There Be Dragons,” or they’d draw dragons onto areas of maps to represent uncharted territory. I’ll confess that the view of Lent from Ash Wednesday often feels to me like looking at a…

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4 responses to “Lent To Us

  1. Starting Lent takes a lot of courage, I guess. It takes less to get through each day as a unique event, endlessly February and never Easter.

    • “It takes less to get through each day as a unique event” is a great way to think about the difficulty of Lent, or winter, or grief, or despair. That’s probably why that construct is the foundation for sobriety for so many people. We will get through this winter together, Doctor P. Ready or not!

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  3. We attended a Lenten service at our Temple today. The marvelous music brought me to a deeper sense of the value of this season than I think I’ve ever known. AND, this post simply confirmed my experience.

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