However, as it is written, "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.
~ 1 Corinthians 2:9 - 10
Lent is often centered upon solemn moments, of inward focus, repentance, forgiveness and sacrifice. This year I seem to be approaching Lent in a different way. This year I am reminding myself to look for the joy, rediscover hope, but most of all, to remember that we are bearers of the light of Christ to others.
Jesus reminds us to, "Set your hearts on the Kingdom of God first...and all other things will be given to you as well."
Remaining focused on the Kingdom of God is also the reminder to seek the goodness that God has provided.
As I sit at our dining room table this morning, the light draping the room, surrounding flowers in a small glass vase, reminds me of an important discipline, and that is to seek the things that bring us closer to the Kingdom of God.
So often as we reflect inwardly on our Lenten journey, we fail to recognize the light that surrounds our steps. To recognize joy is never something that is wrong, or disruptive. It is imperative that rediscover what God is doing around us each day in order for us to feed our faith, to celebrate the blessings, and to share with others the joy that we are encountering.
Yes, I do believe that "Setting our hearts on the Kingdom of God," requires us to look at our lives, and to promote change where change is needed, but if we give something up for Lent and fantasize constantly about returning to it when Lent is over, then it might not be the thing to give up. Instead, what would it be like to give up something in order to become something different than what we currently are?
Instead of looking at it as something we are sacrificing, but instead, something that fulfills the need to bring us closer to the the Kingdom of God, then we begin to understand what Jesus is requiring.
Set your hearts on the Kingdom of God. Be the light of Christ.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2020
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Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.