BSPC Lenten Devotional, 2016

Welcome to the BSPC Lenten Devotional! This devotional was created by staff and members at the First United Methodist Church in Hurst, Texas, and is used by permission.

Throughout Lent, a weekly theme and scripture will be posted along with a daily devotional and prayer. We will be adding a week’s worth of devotions on Sundays beginning with the weekly theme.

Helpful guidelines for using this devotional: 

  • Slowly read and meditate on the scripture passage. 
  • Read the reflection. Consider how the words speak to your life and experience. 
  • What is God is saying to you today? 
  • Use the provided prayer to be in conversation with God.

Wednesday, February 10 • Ash Wednesday
“Ash Wednesday, to me is about as plain as it gets-we come from ashes and return to ashes, and yet there is something, as the poets have often said, that remains standing when we’re gone. So in Easter, and Passover too, something that happens is that we stop. This is the ‘dark night of the soul’ stuff that John the Divine writes about; that in that stopping we may fall into an abyss that we have been trying to outrun since we were little children…and the American way, I think, is to trick out the abyss so it’s a little bit nicer. Maybe to go to Ikea and get a more festive throw rug. But in Lent, if you are a person of committed spiritual growth, you do stop.”
–Anne Lamott

O God, I want this Lent to be different. I want to stop, notice your presence, and listen for your voice. Amen.

THEME: BAPTISM – Scripture: Mark 1:9-15
In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.’ And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness for forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him. Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.’

Thursday, February 11
“I know that Lent is going to be a very hard time for me. The choice for your way has to be made every moment of my life. I have to choose thoughts that are your thoughts, words that are your words, and actions that are your actions. There are no times or places without choices. And I know how deeply I resist choosing you.”
–Henri Nouwen
Lord, I want to choose you in every part of my life. Help me to choose you always. Amen.

Friday, February 12
“Water expresses promises, not that we make to God but that God makes to us, to which we may respond in obedient faith. Water is a sign of God’s mercy to us and of God’s immediate presence in our midst. We are cleansed through water and brought into the community by baptism.”
–Thomas C. Oden
Loving God, when we encounter water throughout our day, may we acknowledge and offer thanks for your presence with us. Amen.

Saturday, February 13
“At its heart, baptism is a bold act. We are marked with God’s stamp that echoes the very story of creation: ‘God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good’ (Genesis 1:31). God says a resounding yes to us in our baptism. Yes, I claim you as my own. Whatever happens to you, I will be there with you, seeking to redeem you, bringing you to your right mind, holding you in my arms, rejoicing in your beauty and uniqueness.”
–George McClain and Tilda Norbert – The Call: Living Sacramentally, Walking Justly
Help me Lord, to remember that you have claimed me. Help me celebrate my uniqueness. Amen.

 

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