Category Archives: Joy

a clearing season: reflections for lent

journeythroughlentYou know it’s always struck me as odd, being a convert and all, how many people struggle with this annual need to “give something up” for Lent and then complain about it to everyone they meet.  For many it’s an opportunity to put aside a vice like drinking or going out to eat or only checking Facebook once a day instead of every fifteen minutes.   Oh I can’t eat that buttery gooey slice of cake dripping in caramel sauce . . . I gave up dessert for Lent.  But you go ahead, that’s alright.  Woe is me!  While I don’t dispute that these temporary denials open up space for God, it’s hard for me to believe they’re that transformative.  And isn’t that what Lent is all about?  In his introduction to the wonderful anthology God For Us, Ronald Rolheiser OMI tells us that Lent comes from an Old English word for springtime, and that in Latin, lente means slowly.  For me, Lent is akin to pushing though the cold muck of winter, stretching my arms heavenward, and opening to beauty.  It could be that way for you, too!  Certainly we must have the ashes to remind us the house needs sweeping, but don’t dwell there too long is all I’m saying.  Instead of giving something up and then being grumpy about it until you get it back — instead of temporarily taking something out of your life — why not make room for something new.  Where in your life can you clear more space for the sacred . . . and be permanently transformed?

This Lent you can keep your chocolate and drink your wine

If you’d like to make more room in your busy life for spiritual fellowship, prayer and JOY, join us as we make our way through Sarah Parsons’ A Clearing Season: Reflections for Lent. In her nifty little tome, Parsons reminds us that Lent is not all about penitence and fasting.  It’s a clearing season.  A time for introspection.  A time of transformation and renewal.  I don’t know about you but sometimes there’s a lot more standing between me and God than a box of See’s candy or a good cabernet!  During each week of Lent we can share our stories and engage in an online discussion about the book. If you think you might like to carve out space in your busy life for spiritual fellowship, prayer and JOY, join us as we journey through Lent together!  You can purchase the book, follow the blog posts, and hopefully share your stories in our online community.  Welcome!

It seems that we need beginnings, or everything eventually devolves and declines into unnecessary and sad endings.  You were made for so much more! . . . You are the desiring of God.  God desires through you and longs for Life and Love through you and in you.  Allow it, speak it, and you will find your place in the universe of things. ~ Fr. Richard Rohr

These are also great books for Lent  . . .

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what she might tell us