Thursday, February 07, 2013

Quaker Girl's Journey to Lent

I have struggled with Lent.  I have treated this time as something Catholic/Lutheran/Episcopalian family "did."  Around this time each year I hear, "I gave up coffee for Lent."  or "I gave up chocolate for Lent."  Honestly, it did nothing for me.  I couldn't grasp the significance of what Lent had to offer me.  Until recently.  Last fall recently.  When we fasted for 40 days.  During that time, God showed me in many ways how important this time can be and both DH and I were speaking of Lent before our fast was even over.

I began researching Lent from an Evangelical point of view.  What if....  What if what I gave up was more than something physical but something that brought me closer to God? 

More research.   One of the best blog posts I found is by Ann Voskamp, author of One Thousand Gifts.  What Lent Really Means.  She has FREE printable devotions for us, speaks of her journey, offers suggestions, lists devotional books that she and her family have found helpful...meaningful. 

     “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
       to loose the chains of injustice
       and untie the cords of the yoke,
       to set the oppressed free
      and break every yoke?
      Is it not to share your food with the hungry
      and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter
      when you see the naked, to clothe him,
      and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
      Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
      and your healing will quickly appear;
      then your righteousness will go before you,
      and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.
      ~Isa. 58:3-8
Holy Week at the Pipers' was good for me to see that what works one year may not work another year for a variety of reasons and the flexibility in working with where we are in our lives was much appreciated by me.  Nicole Piper shares with us her FREE devotional readings to prepare for Easter: Lenten Lights; as well. 
Come With Christ: From the Cradle to the Cross... The Way of Light Wreath is something I really, really want.  (The following pictures were taken by Ann Voskamp.)

I'm into things that fit more than one occasion and this wreath is adjustable for three occasions: Advent, Lent, Ascension!  Until then, I will use what we have and know that Jesus doesn't care what we use to spend time with - it matters that we SPEND time with Him.
Before I sign off, I want to leave you with a post I have recently read that really spoke to me.  I got the book Wonderstruck: Live Astounded by God! for Christmas and love Margaret Feinberg's words hereThe Wonder of Lent.  It's a short, very meaningful blog post.  "How will you lay hold of the wonders of Lent?" she asks.
As my family begins our 40 Days of Solidarity with the Poor, I wonder... who will join me this Lenten Season to do something different - fast, pray, seek His amazing wonder?  We'll be using the book we used last fall as one of our sources from Chris Seay.  As well as the addition of something else, something wonderful.  Something that shouts sacrifice and redemption.  I'll let you know.


  1. Thank you Joy. Very informative and challenging.
    God Bless you and yours as you follow Him. Bev

  2. alfreda8:53 AM

    This is very interesting for us Quaker girls. Thank you & blessings as you journey with Him.

  3. Joy, beautiful post. Beautiful words, beautiful pictures. And thank you for the shout out. So thrilled that you enjoyed Wonderstruck!


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