Invitation to Journey on An Oft Traveled Road

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Today is Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent.  The forty days of Lent is a time to stop, listen and reflect. It is a time to check the map of your life and discern whether you are on the right road, headed where you need to be headed.

The Journey to the Cross is an online lenten devotion, it starts today and runs through to Easter Sunday, April 12. It takes less than 5 minutes to complete and will, I guarantee, bring you closer to a divine peace with each day that passes.

To give you an idea of what you will experience on the Road, I have cut and pasted today devotion into this blog post:

Presence of God
Ashes: what the fire leaves behind. Dust: what wind, rain and decomposition leave behind. What can you leave behind on this Journey to the Cross?

Word of God
He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.” -Mark 8:34-35

Devotion
“Remember that you are dust, and to dust you will return.” One Ash Wednesday service, my eldest son was one of the worship leaders. It was a little spooky to have him draw the cross on my forehead with his thumb and whisper those words in my ear. Spooky, but honest: “Dad, you won’t be here forever, you know.” Yes, I know. Neither will you, and neither of us wants to think much about seeing the other laid in the ground.

Lent is a journey that begins in ashes, reminding us that we’re all headed for the dust. Lent is a Cross-shaped, Cross-directed journey. We’re headed for Golgotha, and as Mark maps it out, we start by picking up our own crosses. It’s not all grim — Mark includes some lighter moments — but it is altogether serious. Challenging us to let some things go and to increase our efforts at others, Mark’s Jesus will rattle your cage. Picture this Lent beginning with Jesus drawing the cross on your forehead and whispering, “Follow me.”

Are you ready?

Conversation with God
O Jesus, I don’t want to die, but I will. I don’t want to abandon what you ask me to leave behind, but I must. O Lord, help me. Have mercy on me. Amen.

Benediction
May the God who called Jesus to the cross and who supported him on the road be with you. May Jesus, who calls us to follow him, be constantly in your thoughts. And may you feel the Spirit, the wind that blows the dust and stirs the ashes, all around you.

NOTE: In the Anglican church, the six Sundays in Lent are not counted among the forty days because each Sunday represents a “mini-Easter”, a celebration of Jesus’ victory over sin and death. Woo Hoo! Chocolate on Sundays!

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~ by Kimberly Mason on February 25, 2009.

One Response to “Invitation to Journey on An Oft Traveled Road”

  1. Lots of folks do not know about “mini-Easter” every Sunday in Lent. We had a function in the parish hall and someone brought cake. One of the parishioners got all worked up about it being Lent and no sweets. Our assistant rector set everyone straight and had the first piece of cake offered!

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