Posted in Random Thoughts and Ramblings

Lent

LentRecently I was having a conversation with one of my fellow student pastor seminarians about liturgy. I grew up in a church that did not follow the liturgical calendar very closely and that didn’t practice special days and seasons such a Ash Wednesday and Lent.  As I expressed to my friend, since I became a Methodist I have really enjoyed studying the traditions and liturgy and have a deep appreciation for them now. While I do not consider myself dogmatic, I do love the details of the different seasons and the major feast days on the Christian calendar.

One of the seasons I have really come to appreciate is Lent. As I mentioned above, I didn’t grow up observing Lent but since I have started I have found that I truly can focus more on God when I give up something that distracts me. I have come to realize that in order to get the most out of this season, I must give up something that is one of my biggest distractions. I love Facebook, Twitter and basically any other form of social media. I love the interaction, being exposed to different points of view than mine, and keeping up with events with people I have known all my life. I also realize that I spent a lot of time concentrating on these things. While they are great, they can be a distraction. Those area the reasons I decided to give up my social media (exceptions made for messenger, maintain church social media, and this blog) for Lent.

What do I hope to gain out of it? First, I want to focus more on my own spiritual development. This has been one of my major goals for the year in general and giving up social media for a season will allow me to more fully put new spiritual practices into practice as well as doing more of my current practices. I also hope to experience more peace. As much as I love social media, it’s often noisy and sometimes downright nasty. I find myself growing angry over things I find out about through social media; this is not something I like about myself. In short, I believe putting down my personal social media and picking up those things that draw me closer to God more often will be good for me.

I made a post to my Facebook page last night explaining that I would not be posting due to this Lenten fast and I closed with a thought that I will also close this blog post out with: What can you pick up in order to bring you closer to God? What can you let go of?

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Author:

I'm a UMC pastor appointed to Druid Hills UMC and Lost Gap UMC in Meridian, MS. I'm married to woman certified to teach physics (in other words, she's much smarter than me!) and we have a daughter who is with the Lord. I love talking about Jesus and making much of Him, sports, ministries of justice and mercy, whatever else comes to mind. I'm kind of like a box of chocolates: You never know what you're gonna get.

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