Lent

I’m new to the Lenten tradition.  Coming from a Mennonite background, growing up in Plymouth Brethren, Evangelical Free, and Baptist General Conference churches, and then marrying a Southern Baptist, Lent was not a part of the church calendar.  So what is Lent?  I read on Ann Voskamp’s site today, what Lent is.

“It’s the preparing the heart for Easter. Like going with Jesus into the wilderness for forty days, that we might come face to ugly face with our enemy. Our sacrificing that we might become more like Christ in His sacrifice.”

How does this look, to a baby Anglican?  It is a reflective time.  Does it mean giving something up like chocolate?  Maybe, if that is what is a sacrifice.  I’m struggling this year as to what it looks like in my life and heart.  Do I give up what I’ve done in the past, dessert, Facebook?  Or do I branch out and do something new.  What is new?  What is a sacrifice to me?

To be honest, I feel sorry for myself.  I’ve moved 2 times in a year, I’ve left friends who I miss with all of my heart in different parts of the country and the world.  I miss my family.  I hate that it costs so much time and money to fly to see them.  I hate that I can’t see dear friends who loved Douglas and myself for we are.  We who were of a different background, yet there was much to celebrate together.   May the Lord be with them no matter where they are.  I miss you and your hospitality and the grace you have shown us.  I continue to pray and beg the Lord for friends such as they have been to me.

I write this with tears of loneliness.  Those feelings block out the desire to search for what to give up for Lent.  But deep down I yearn to have a heart that is satisfied in Him and Him alone, not in the friendships, which stretch and thin over distance.

And so my Lenten fast will be once again, a fast from Facebook.  Not so much because I am addicted, though I am, but because I want to be satisfied with Christ.  I want his friendship to be first.   I have failed in my thankfulness quest.  I have failed in my desire to suck wisdom from a quiet time.  My to do list and the wasting time on Facebook and the internet gets in the way most days.  And so giving up Facebook, hopefully, will train me to see and hear Him first in the morning.

I will fail, I will falter in my quest to see Him for the to-do list always is there.  So I pray that I will come out stronger and truly trust that the Lord will bring us through this desert.

As I pray for a heart devoted to Him, I will also continue to pray for kindred friends for Douglas and myself as well as for our kids.  Friends who will share their hearts and homes with us and who love us unconditionally.

Though he may bring me through lonely valleys, I will trust Him.  To those of you who got here from Facebook.  I’ll see you on Easter!!!!!  Praise the Lord, He is Risen!!!!!!!

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2 thoughts on “Lent

  1. Reading this makes my heart ache for and with you. We moved last spring and I can identify with your feelings…not because we’d moved so many times before, but because we’d been in one place for so long and thought we would be there for the long haul. Saying goodbye to those precious friends nearly ripped my heart out. I’ll forever remember standing on our neighbors’ (and best friends) driveway while we all wept, saying goodbye. And I miss those friends terribly, yet He is faithful and has blessed us with new friends who have opened their hearts and homes to us and loved us when we have been quite unloveable. They have loved us with the Gospel. He is faithful and provides. I pray you and yours will quickly find your “people” and that He will comfort your heart and carry you in this hard season. Hang in there.

  2. You are beautiful Jonelle, there is still an emptiness here without you! One can not fill it up with Waffles from the Netto..;) We are all on this journey together, getting each other to our eternal reward. God love ya dear friend!

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