I Failed at Lent

I’ll be honest with you. I totally bonked on Lent this year.

Over the past several years, the annual observance of Lent has been a very meaningful part of my spiritual formation. For me, Lent has been a time to experiment with different choices and disciplines. It has been a time for me to get out of my own rut. I’ve experienced great freedom and a rebirth of newness in my life through Lent.

But not this year.   Read More…

Exodus and Calendars and Lent and Books


Each weekday morning, our family gathers on Vanessa’s and my bed to read the Bible and pray together. Since we are studying Exodus at Vintage this year, we decided to read it as a family in the mornings. On Tuesday, Calvin read Exodus 12 for us. And verse 2 captured my imagination. In it God is talking to Moses and Aaron. God says,

This month is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year.



There are many calendars in our world. By “calendars” I don’t mean the paper or electronic devices on which we record our appointments. I mean ways of dividing our days, the seasons by which order our lives.   Read More…

Now What?

Lent 2012 was a wonderful experience.

At Vintage, we spent time thinking about how we are free in the Spirit. The things that have mastered us in the past don’t have to master us now. We can reimagine our lives. We can break out of our rut and live differently. Lent gives us a 40-day opportunity to experiment with this freedom.

For me personally, I gave up alcohol during the 40 days of Lent. I joked that every couple of years I need to remind myself that I am not an alcoholic. But it is actually really important to remember that even the good things can easily become a master. I want to have no master but Jesus.

Sometimes Lent is dark, but not this year. This year it was an energizing time for me. It was kind of fun.

And so was Easter. I love Easter. I love my annual Cadbury Egg. I love the annual kids’ sermon at Vintage, even though I joke that I don’t. I love how loud the band is on Easter Sunday. I love hanging with my friends and celebrating life together.

So this morning, I am wondering “now what?” Lent was such an intentional time full of conscious thought about the choices I was making. I couldn’t coast through Lent, and I didn’t. And I don’t want to go back to coasting through my life. However, I also don’t want to immediately enter into another prolonged spiritual experiment. My soul needs some downtime.

What do I do now that Easter is over? I think Jesus provides the answer – I live. Easter is about life, how great life is, how life is what God intended for us. And so the best thing I can do now is be fully alive. I need to live.

I love my wife.
I laugh with my kids.
I have lunch with my friends.
I get my work done with as much excellence as I can.
I write.
I watch the sunset and my favorite TV shows.
I spend some time with my neighbors.
I attempt to spread grace and justice.
I am alive.


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