Five ways to experience Lent

February 25, 2020

I grew up thinking the four major days of the church year were Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. They were certainly the days that seemed to receive the most excitement and attention.

Since my childhood, however, I have been exposed to and studied many different traditions of worship, and I find that we often miss out on some wonderful worship experiences when we eliminate many of the significant days from the traditional church calendar.

Feb. 26 is Ash Wednesday this year. This marks the beginning of the season of Lent which is a 40-day period focused on prayer and preparation to celebrate Easter. Lent culminates with Holy Week, beginning the Sunday before Easter and leading up to Easter Sunday.

The Sunday before Easter is Palm Sunday, or Passion Sunday, and celebrates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The Thursday before Easter is Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday and remembers the Last Supper. Good Friday is the day that we commemorate Christ’s death on the cross. Finally, Easter Sunday is a great day of celebrating the resurrection.

We often miss out on some wonderful worship experiences when we eliminate many of the significant days from the traditional church calendar.

Lent has traditionally been marked by penitential prayer, fasting and giving. Some churches today still observe a rigid schedule of fasting on certain days during Lent, which is often accompanied by giving up meat, sweets or other types of food.

Oftentimes, I give up something during Lent. And, what I have discovered is that every time I crave the item I have given up, I think about the reason I am giving it up and focus on the suffering and death of Jesus. It is amazing how much this helps me focus and prepare for Easter.

In my opinion, Easter is an even greater celebration when we truly experience Lent. Yet for many who have never been exposed to the “real” church calendar, the idea may seem somewhat foreign.

Here are some ways to help you experience Lent. If this is your first year experiencing Lent, prayerfully consider just one or two things. Some ideas may give you thoughts to consider for next year.

  • Do a Bible reading plan with a friend.
  • Do a family devotional each day.
  • Fast from something in order to focus on prayer and seeking God.
  • Give sacrificially to those in need – thought, money, time, energy or gifts.
  • Drive in silence. Spend your morning and evening in prayer.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is adapted from a blog post by Kenny Lamm, senior consultant for worship and music for the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. Read more of Kenny’s writings on the Renewing Worship blog.

by Kenny Lamm  Renewing Worship  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

BSCNC exploring ‘alternative options’ for 2020 annual meeting

The Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s 2020 annual meeting will not be held at the Joseph S. Koury Convention Center in Greensboro on Nov. 9-10 as originally planned due to continued uncertainties about large-group gatherings amid ongoing concerns related to COVID-19....

Pray for the next leader of your state convention

I’ll never forget the request that my late father made of North Carolina Baptists on the day I became the 14th executive director-treasurer of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. “Please pray for him every day of your life,” my dad urged those who attended the...

EDT search team names officers, sets deadline for recommendations

The search committee tasked with finding the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s (BSCNC) next executive director-treasurer held its first meeting on Monday, Aug. 3 at Caraway Camp and Conference Center near Asheboro, N.C. The group named Allan Blume as vice chairman, Pam...

Dental ministry provides gospel opportunities

Dental ministry provides gospel opportunities Your gifts to the North Carolina Missions Offering (NCMO) provide outstanding dental care which, in turn, opens the door for disciple-making relationships to happen. Dental units operated by Baptists on Mission provide dental care for...

Church, let thy children play

For many churches, children’s ministry will hopefully regather this fall after children have been worshipping and growing in their discipleship at home after an extended time away. As children’s ministries welcome children back to the church building (whenever that takes place),...

3 ways to encourage your child to play (and why you should)

For months, children have been sequestered at home with distance learning from both school and church. Closed parks and playgrounds disappointed children and parents alike. Fear of contracting COVID-19 has disrupted life as we know if for months, and when we return to gathering as...

Top 5 resources for August 2020

Every month, we spotlight five helpful resources for you as you seek to walk closely with the Lord and make disciples. Many of these resources are created by the staff of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSCNC) to help meet the ministry needs of pastors and lay...

How to revitalize your church in 4 days

Can a church be revitalized in four days? This may sound a little optimistic, but many pastors actually try to revitalize their church in just one day: Sunday. However, there should be some strategy to this process. How we spend our working days between Sundays has the most impact...

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Stay connected by signing up for the N.C. Baptist monthly newsletter.

Select Language ^

Share This

Share this with your friends!