Dear Sabbath Seekers,
Today is Ash Wednesday marking the beginning of Lent. Many Christians will wear the mark of ashes on their foreheads today signifying their entrance on the path of Lent. There will be Christians who will give up some things and others who will take something on. There will be Christians who will enter into a six-week period of spiritual reflection seeking a deeper commitment to Christ. And there will be Christians who will begin but get sidetracked along the way to Holy Week because life just gets in the way.
To be honest with you, I have no idea which group I will end up in by the time Maundy Thursday dawns. My higher self wants to believe I will go deep and long on this playing field and my realistic self isn’t so optimistic.
It’s a lot like how I approach Sabbath. Some weeks I am so on top of my game with Sabbath moments and time that I wonder how I ever let myself fall out of that life-giving rhythm and some weeks my discipline is anything but.
And yet, I try, we try, and some times I/we succeed because somewhere in our heart of hearts I know, we know, how important these ritualized times of breaking away from the day-to-day habits are. There is something compelling in the human psyche that draws us to periods of reflection on and awareness of the deeper mysteries of life, our connection to them and what it means to live with a purpose beyond our own material needs.
I believe that is part of the God seed planted within our souls that yearns to connect with the source of life, love and light. And if I can nurture that seed enough over the next six weeks of Lent, I know that the light will grow brighter and warmer each day until the Son rises on Easter morning reminding me again of just how much God loves me. And I also believe that if I take a detour off the Lenten path of reflection and sacrifice, that my God will still shine brightly and still love me on Easter; however, I will be the one who has cheated myself of six weeks of profound companionship and joy.
“For in him we live and move and have our being.” Acts 17.28