February 25, 2009 by Stephen
Lent is a journey that begins in ashes, reminding us that we’re all headed for the dust. Lent is a Cross-shaped, Cross-directed journey. We’re headed for Golgotha, and as Mark maps it out, we start by picking up our own crosses. It’s not all grim – Mark includes some lighter moments – but it is altogether serious. Challenging us to let some things go and to increase our efforts at others, Mark’s Jesus will rattle your cage. Picture this Lent beginning with Jesus drawing the cross on your forehead and whispering, “Follow me.”
Are you ready?
The above paragraph is from the beginning devotional by Richard Vinson of Passport, Inc.‘s Journey to the Cross, an online daily Lenten devotional. We observed Ash Wednesday in our church. I prayed a prayer before receiving the ashes with the elementary-aged children. After that, we exited the service and had a special time together where we discussed the meaning and significance of Ash Wednesday and the season of Lent. Again this year, we discussed making Lenten promises. My promise is to be faithful in my devotional life during Lent. Instead of giving something up this year, I decided to be more proactive and positive. I’m hoping this promise will help with the challenge to follow Jesus raised in Vinson’s quote. We’ll see how it goes. I’ll be checking in with the children from time to time to see how they are doing with their promises. This journey through Lent with our children at church is always a positive and affirming experience for me.