By Chrissy Tatum Williamson
Sometimes the spiritual path is simple and straightforward. Faith comes effortlessly and life feels full of hope. More often – I would dare to say – the path is not so straight, but rather windy and sometimes even repetitively so.
Often times when we turn to our Bibles, we find a leader in Jesus whose path seems pre-ordained, intentional, clear, and straight, all the way from Bethlehem to the cross. But if we look to the disciples we find a different story, a different journey altogether. This year in the weeks between Ash Wednesday (2/14) and Easter Sunday (3/31), we will follow the ministry of Jesus through the lens of Peter, one of the very first disciples. In Peter’s story we will find a disciple who is steadfast and unsteady, a friend and follower, a wanderer, and also a betrayer. Still, Peter is the one who Jesus calls the “rock” and the one with whom the Christian church claims its foundation.
Throughout this season we will be using prayers, poetry, artwork, and other resources created by the team at A Sanctified Art. This year as they were studying Peter’s journey and preparing materials for this series, something interesting happened. Here’s what they wrote about it: “As we were studying Peter’s faith journey, the lyrics of Come Thou Fount came to mind. It’s as if Peter himself wrote the song. And so, for each step in Peter’s journey, we have selected a phrase from this hymn. As we follow Peter’s story, we will sing our way through Lent, binding our wandering hearts to God.” (Wandering Heart Infographic “About this Series”)
In this season, each of us is invited to recognize the unique faith journey that we are on, to take stock of where we are and where we’ve been; and then to be intentional about the next step we want to take in order to grow closer to God.
Some examples might be:
- Read the daily devotion from the Lenten Devotional Booklet
- Pray each day using the prompt from the daily prayer cards
- Begin each day with 5 minutes of silence and solitude, listen for what God may be saying to you
- Read one Psalm or one chapter of one of the Gospels each day
- Start a prayer journal and commit to write in it throughout the season of Lent
- Commit to attend worship and Bible Study each week during Lent (it is just 7 Sundays)
- Ask God to show you new ways to give generously and serve our neighbors during this season
- Participate in a mission project, or volunteer with a local nonprofit
These are just a few examples of the many ways you can be intentional about your faith journey during this special time of the church year. I believe that through any of these Lenten practices, God will draw near to us, and help to show us the next step.
So what do you say? Will you commit to taking one next step in your faith journey this season of Lent? What will it be? What will you discover?
God only knows! And I am excited to find out with you!