1st March, 2024
I hope you are enjoying your journey through Lent. Those of us who attended the Ash Wednesday service were inspired by the thoughts of Rev Andrew Hemming who reminded us that as we travel through Lent, and through our lives, we meet and travel with a Jesus who knows what is to be both divine and human, who loves us, who wants us to love him and his creation as he loves each one of us and who wants us to get to know him more. The traditions of fasting and abstinence in Lent are not there as a punishment but are there to help us focus on what is really important, to come to know Jesus even better than we think we do. Lent is a time for us to deepen our connection to God by reflecting on Jesus’ life and teaching through reflection on our lives, through prayer, repentance and through greater commitment.
Last month Geoff wrote about the importance of reading the bible. The bible readings for the Sundays in Lent prepare us for Passiontide and Easter. This year’s Sunday readings - Mark 1 9-15; John 2: 13-22; 2 Corinthians 1: 3-7; John 12: 20-33; John 12; 12-16 - tell us about Jesus’ journey to his death and resurrection; his sacrifice and his promises; his challenges and the challenges for all people. Re-visiting these readings (and others) remind us about that love that Jesus has for us all and they ask for us to respond in our lives and our own journeys.
Our benefice journey towards a new incumbent is moving on. The advert has been published, with a closing date of March 21st. This a journey for us and for those who might apply for the position. There is strength in knowing that all those journeys have one thing in common: that Jesus is travelling with us all. We may not know what the future holds for us, but on our Lenten journey, we look forward to the wonderful joy and light of Easter, knowing that Jesus’ life, death and resurrection show us what we have to cherish, celebrate and share. That fills all of our journeys with hope, with comfort, with inspiration and, above all, with love.
Wishing you all a thought-provoking Lent and a joyful, blessed Easter.