It’s been a little off kilter this week – a busy school week, I’ve been a bit plague-ish – and on one of those antibiotics that seem to be almost as rough as the ailment, and we had some beastly weather.
But you know what what? Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week, so all of that is set aside.
This week is the most significant in the church calendar, the week that changes everything. ❤
I’ll be here every day this week to talk.
For now, I have an odd suggestion. I mentioned Sarah Bessey on International Women’s Day – I’m a big fan of her work – and she sent her Field Notes subscribers a lovely gift, a devotional book for Holy Week. Well, when I started it today, the front contained a Lenten Calendar with suggestions of an optional activity for each day of Lent. Clearly, it is too late for all of the activities – but I thought it would be a nice idea to share some of my favorites here so perhaps we could all choose a few to do as we observe this Holy Week.
Sarah’s Lenten Suggestions.
- Choose something to fast this last week of Lent – whether the traditional things, like dessert or meat, or something non-traditional, such as social media or Netflix
- Pray for your friends and enemies by name and bless them individually, especially the person that you find most difficult to love.
- Unfollow five (or more) accounts on social media that make you feel jealous or angry or fearful.
- Read Amos 5. Repent this Lenten season as we are to do for the Kingdom of Heaven is near.
- Make a list of 40 people and experiences you are grateful for.
- Donate 40 items to charity.
- Use reusable grocery bags and a reusable coffee mug this week.
- Read or listen to the Gospel of John. ❤
- Sign up to support a ministry or non-profit you believe in, even $5 a month.
- Read Psalm 139 aloud.
- Pray the Jesus prayer, “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner,” slowly throughout the day.
I’m looking forward to spending Holy Week with y’all. ❤
Closing with a Scripture blessing seems appropriate for this week so today I’m going to start with one of Sarah’s choices, Psalm 139.
Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know when I sit down and when I stand up;
You understand my thoughts from far away.
You observe my travels and my rest;
You are aware of all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue,
You know all about it, Lord.
You have encircled me;
You have placed your hand on me.
This wonderous knowledge is beyond me.
It is lofty; I am unable to reach it.
Where can I go to escape Your spirit?
Where can I flee from Your presence?
If I go up to heaven, You are there.
If I make my bed in Sheol, You are there.
If I live at the eastern horizon or settle at the western limits,
Even there Your hand will lead me;
Your right hand will hold on to me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me,
And the light around me will be night”
Even the darkness is not dark to You.
The night shines like the day;
Darkness and light are alike to you.
For it was You who created my inward parts;
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You because I have been remarkably and wondrously made.
Your works are wondrous, and I know this very well.
My bones were not hidden from You
When I was made in secret,
When I was formed in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw me when I was formless;
All my days were written in your book
and planned before a single one of them began.
God, how precious your thoughts are to me;
How vast their sum is!
If I counted them,
They would outnumber the grains of sand;
When I wake up, I am still with You.
. . .
Search me, God, and know my heart;
Test me and know my concerns.
See if there is any offensive way in me;
Lead me in the everlasting way.
Psalm 139 1-18; 23-24
Be well, everybody. Take care of yourselves and each other.
Grace and Blessings.