Lenten Devotional // First Sunday

Sunday, March 6
THE PRACTICE OF PRAYER by Sabra Engelbrecht

Reflection

Prayerful fasting, repentance, and confession are traditional ways to mark the beginning of Lent. These practices can seem daunting and, frankly, not fun. But they can be helpful as we seek to hold a spirit of reflection and devotion throughout the 40 days of Lent. This week you reflected on these practices. What did your reflections stir up in you? Do you approach these ideas with resistance or a spirit of openness? If you find yourself resistant, that’s ok. Take some time to consider what might be the source of your resistance. Take it to God and see what happens.

Prayer


As we enter fully into the Lenten season, we take a moment here to offer a prayer of confession:

Almighty and most merciful God,
we have erred and strayed from your ways like lost sheep.
We have followed too much the devices and desires
of our own hearts.
We have offended against your holy laws.
We have left undone those things which we ought to have done,
and we have done those things which we ought not
to have done;
and apart from your grace, there is no health in us.
O Lord, have mercy upon us.
Spare all those who confess their faults.
Restore all those who are penitent, according to your promises
declared to all people in Christ Jesus our Lord.
And grant, O most merciful Father, for his sake,
that we may now live a godly, righteous, and sober life,
to the glory of your holy Name. Amen.+

+The prayer of confession was taken from The Daily Office According to the Book of Common Prayer (March 3, 2019).

A practice to try this week:

Be mindful of how often you go to God in prayer. Do your prayers feel relational, like an exchange? Or do they more often feel one-sided? This week, try to spend more time listening than talking. Ask God to meet you in the empty space.

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