…that we are in the holy presence of God
….that we are dust and to dust returneth
One way to think about the coming season of Lent is that it’s a season of remembering. Remembering that tending what is hidden is holy work, remembering the life and death of Jesus, remembering that his death is not the end of the story.
For a few years, I’ve been using the four-fold image of a compass to help me conceive of practices that will draw me closer and help me remember. Help turn my heart of stone into a heart of flesh. Here’s what I’m contemplating for this year.
North :: Scripture Every Day
I want to read each day’s scripture + reflection in Sacred Space. I have last year’s edition, so I have to juggle the dates. But it still works! Pray As You Go is another excellent way to experience scripture as a touchstone, a way to remember and return to our North Star.
East :: Digital Sabbath
From sundown on Saturday to sundown on Sunday, I want to have my computer and phone turned off. This is going to be the most disruptive practice! I use Sunday afternoons to both work on lesson plans for the coming week + to listen to lectures in my poetry class. Of course these good uses of technology tend to slip into mindless scrolling, and that’s the opposite of remembering. I’ll have to find alternate places for this work to live, and I don’t know where that’s going to be yet.
South :: Meatless Fridays
Mostly I’ll need to rethink lunches and make sure that we have meatless options. We eat beans + rice every week already, but I’m moving them to Fridays so that we can be more mindful of this choice.
West : Sacred Reading
Along with a class on formal poetry with Sally Thomas and monthly workshops with Holly Wren Spaulding, I stumbled into a wonderful Shakespeare class at Schole Sisters taught by Kelly Cumbee. It’s weaving together a few different strands of study for me–fairy tales, Greek myths, as well as some Lewis + Tolkien lectures. You can listen to interviews at Schole Sisters and The Literary Life podcasts to get a taste of Kelly’s gentle, erudite teaching.
My work as a poet + home educator is my vocation, part of my path to Heaven. Learning myself and being a lively guide for my children are spiritual pursuits at heart. Through them I am being renewed and transformed. Attending to them in a focused way helps me remember.
If you’d like to read a few more simple ideas that will help you keep Lent with your family, I’d love to send you my ebook called Observing Lent with Our Families. Just click here to enter your email, and I’ll send it right over!