Lent Encounter 2019
Lent is something we celebrate as part of cession|community's Rhythms of Life. We're reimagining what Lent looks like for us who want to live out ancient rhythms in a modern world. Check out the Lent Preparation Guide as you reflect on what Lent might look like for you in 2019.
Week 6 - Share-able
You'll find the message here. This week's Lent Encounter is about taking time to reflect on what sharing good news looks like for us as we learn to be fully present. Take some time to journal, reflect, pray around the following questions:
1. In what ways does fear hold you back from living out and speaking words of Good News to people in your life?
2. How do you answer Paul's question in 1 Cor 9:1 "Am I not free....?" What does freedom in Christ look like for your life?
3. What are the areas that you find it hard to "be all things" as Paul describes it? What steps can you take in these areas to reach out to people?
4. Take time to pray for 3 people this week who you are in relationship with, are in the process of earning the right with, that you are longing to encourage to take a next step towards Jesus.
Week 5 - Love-able
You'll find the message here. This week's Lent Encounter is about taking time to reflect on what loving others looks like for us as we learn to be fully present. Take some time to journal, reflect, pray around the following questions:
1. How did Greg's story of his homeless friend speak into your life and experiences?
2. In what ways do you find your own desire to be loved gets in the way of loving others fully?
3. Is there a disconnect for you between how you bargain with God for his love and how you experience love with people?
4. Read through 1 John 4 several times noting the themes that stand out for you - what does it mean for you to take a step towards loving others more fully this week?
Week 4 - Connect-able
You'll find the message here. This week's Lent Encounter is about taking time to reflect on how our relationships (the good, the bad and the ugly) are places we learn to be fully present. Take some time to journal, reflect, pray around the following questions:
1. We looked at the different ways we "live through others" - how do these apply to you? Take some time to understand how these ways of living are part of your relationships. Give what you discover to God. Are there people who are getting caught up in this who need an apology or some care?
(a) Using people to meet our needs (Colossians 3:5)
(b) Taking out our frustrations on others (Colossians 3:6)
(c) Hiding from people or lying to them as part of protecting our own self-image (Colossians 3:9-10)
2. Read through Colossians 3:19. As you do, which words stand out to you as clothes you might "put on"? Journal through the barriers to these new ways of living. Ask God for help and insight into what it might mean for you to put on one of these words this week.
3. The opportunities of "bearing with each other" (not taking offence) and "forgiving grievances (where offence has occurred) are presented in verse 13. In what ways does forgiveness come hard or easy for you? Are there people you need to forgive right now? Take some time to reflect on God's forgiveness to you and those situations where your forgiveness is needed.
Week 3 - Living in Time With the Divine
You'll find the message here. This week's Lent Encounter is about taking time to add rhythm to our lives with God using some of the ideas Brett shared on Sunday.
How is your diet? How are you doing defining the "what" - the carbs, fats and proteins of spiritual life - Bible, Prayer and Community - God's Word, God's Presence and God's People. What are your current rhythms here? What barriers are you experiencing?
The "where" of spiritual rhythms can make a big difference - where are the places where spiritual rhythms work for you? What spaces might you need to create?
How can you apply the "how" principles to your rhythms?
Tracking – identifying the rhythms that distract
Stacking – new rhythms from old - adding new rhythms to existing rhythms
Training Wheels – scaffolding your rhythm using apps, reminders, alarms
Replay – the examined life - journalling, prayer of examen
Statio – the moments between moments - pausing between events
Selah – pausing for the presence - capturing God's presence in the moments, praying on the go
The explanations are all in the message in more detail.
Take some time to add 1 or 2 next steps to your "Being With" Guide.
Week 2 - Praying for Peace
Week 1 - Life In Focus
You'll find the message here. This week's Lent Encounter is about taking time to bring life into focus using the 2 definitions of distraction Brett shared on Sunday:
Distraction as Hijacking the present moment
Distraction as an Aimlessness around what is valuable in the present moment
Take some time this week to reflect and /or journal around these thoughts:
What are those things that have value for you right now?
What stands in the way of you protecting and nurturing these things?
What do you need to "put down" to maintain focus on the things that matter to you?
What might you "pick up" to nurture the things that are most important to you? The "Being With" Guide is a helpful tool to apply here.