A good friend of Karyn’s recently shared a great idea about her and her husband’s commitment for Lent.  For her, Lent is too much about taking away— instead, she suggested that they use Lent as an opportunity to add on extra effort.

For instance, trusting the Holy Spirit to empower you to improve one of your weaker spiritual disciplines:  like listening to God in solitude or using your family’s mealtimes more intentionally to read a Psalm together each day (how many of our families actually eat meals together anymore?), or, like we’ll be encouraging at Blanchard this Lent, memorizing Philippians 2:5-11 together as individuals and families.

As Christians during the Lenten season, we have an abundance of spiritual power and authority at our disposal; but, much to our loss, we let all this good fruit wither and die on the vine, though it’s right in front of us.  As C.S. Lewis laments in his poem, Posturing:

“Thou givest grapes, and I,
Though starving, turn to see
How dark the cool globes lie
in the white hand of me,
And linger gazing thither
Till the live clusters wither”

During our Solemn Assembly last Sunday, not only did I treasure the rich celebration at the end of our service, affirming our newness in Christ but I also had the privilege of enjoying a quiet morning at home with my family.  There was a spiritual intensity to our day together that I very much enjoyed, highlighted by my oldest daughter sitting on our living room couch reading Nehemiah 8-9 on her own to learn a little bit more about the historical precedent for our Solemn Assembly later that night.

Perhaps you were there? Do you have a story to tell? I encourage you to share yours here, which will eventually be uploaded to our website to share with the rest of Blanchard’s family.

In the mean time, I’ll ponder that good thought some more today:  rather than deny myself during Lent, how might I be able to add to my faith this season?