2020 - A Different Lent
We are in the middle of Lent, the Christian season of repentance, in which we examine our lives in order to become more Christ-like in our thoughts, words and actions. Ideally we should do this daily throughout the year, but Lent provides us with a special opportunity to put aside the things that crowd our busy lives and instead reflect on our spiritual journey.
Due to Covid-19, many people's busy lives have become even busier, whilst others have suddenly found themselves with time on their hands as businesses, educational centres and social gatherings close. Whilst people are very anxious about the virus and how it is affecting our communities and wider society, we must hold on firmly to our awareness of the love of Christ in all things.
During Lent, the Sale Methodists are using the book Thinking through Lent. From Inside The Bible to Outside The Box, written by Richard Jackson. A series of Lent groups across the circuit have been working through the ‘Six Thinking Hats’ of the psychologist and management guru Edward De Bono. The conversations within the initial groups were informative and helpful enabling members to reflect on their own faith journey.
Deep underground across London, Crossrail have been working to create a new railway called the Elizabeth Line. The project started decades ago and accelerated when the Crossrail Act was passed in 2008. Since then thousands of people have been working night and day to complete the new line so that it can transport people around the capital.
When it opens later next year, people will become aware of all the work that has been going on below the ground. This is a metaphor for our Christian journey: if God is to work his good purpose in our lives, this starts deep within us and surfaces in the way we live our lives. The evidence for the work of Crossrail will be in the opening of the Elizabeth line. The evidence for our Christian faith will be in the way we live out our Christian lives. May the work of Lent continue for the rest of our lives as we wholeheartedly seek to be more like Jesus, day by day.