I take the time of Lent very seriously... As our Bishop Susan has said, we are in a time of Spiritual Renewal, however, I believe it is crucial to recognize that Spiritual Renewal cannot happen unless there is Spiritual Discipline.
Prayer, and reading the Bible are only two aspects of Spiritual Discipline. Fasting and almsgiving (giving to the poor) are also part of our spiritual discipline - the journey we must make to carve out space for things that help us self-evaluate our relationship to the rest of the world and to God. Moments we would not necessarily take during the regular course of the year. During Lent it is important to reflect on our state of 'spirituality' and sometimes writing down what is on our hearts pulls what is happening inside of ourselves into the light.
I use the form of Lament during the season of Lent as one way of expressing how I feel at this particular point in time. Here is my Lament for the season of Lent...
In the desolate silence of my misery and pain I listen for the offering of relief. ‘Why’ is a word we ask so often. ‘Why’ does a young child die, ‘Why’ does a person behave in the way they do that contradicts ‘loving one’s neighbour’. ‘Why’ is suffering allowed and if there is a lesson to be learned ‘why’ is it in a way that creates numbness without insight right away?
‘Why’ do those who seemingly go through life without care or worry belittle those whose pain is sometimes too much to endure. Seeking only for themselves a proud distance from what others bear with disdain and judgement?
You, O God, give deliverance through time and Your saving help. You show your steadfast love and faithfulness by drying every tear and giving comfort to every sigh. Mercy and grace support my every breath as those who seek to find fault try to bring shame and dishonour to my life…. to take away the rock that is You.
When life and love should be caught up and held with value and respect, we see a poverty of acts and behaviours in those of your community - including ourselves.
The question ‘why’ is bound up with the question, ‘why not’. The mystery of that is sometimes too great to consider but I know where it’s richness lies. It in in You.
I am in constant need of Your presence, O Lord. Do not turn away or forget your servant.
Take time to reflect on your Lenten journey this season.
Peace and blessings,