How does Lent feel so far? Some of you know, it is my favorite season. One of the reasons I like Lent so much is the reflective nature of these forty days. But I also really enjoy the gatherings on Wednesday evenings. Being a life-long Lutheran, I can’t remember a time that my Wednesday evenings during Lent were not spent at church. That’s been my life and I love it.
I also should also say that soup is the only meal I’ve had at a Lenten supper in my entire life. No Lenten BBQ rib nights for me. Soup is simple and it is filling, just like Lent. The journey of Lent is simple and filling.
No, I don’t give up anything for Lent, but I do add something. Time with whoever wants to gather on Wednesday night to be filled physically and spiritually.
It is the embodiment of Jesus’ teaching when he told us to love God and love people. That happens whenever gather as a church, but there is an intimacy when we gather around dinner tables and share our lives before we worship in a simple yet profound way.
When I am in the presence of Christians (and Jesus too), I am the best version of myself. Brothers and sisters in Christ bring out the best in me. The Spirit of God is always strongest when it is surrounded by others with the same Spirit.
I was just thinking about the story of the “Woman at the Well” in John 4. After her brief conversation with Jesus, she goes back into town and tells the people to come with her to meet him because, “He told me everything I have ever done.” John 4:39
I find great comfort in that sentence. Jesus knows me better than I know myself—the good, bad and ugly. Yet, he loves me more than I can possibly imagine. The woman who uttered those words realized that too, even though Jesus revealed her checkered past and present. I can imagine this woman thinking to herself, “This man knows everything about me and he doesn’t judge me.” That is good news!
Maybe that is why I resonate with Lent. As we journey toward the cross, I know that Jesus doesn’t judge me and I get to be reminded of that when I gather with my friends on Wednesdays and on Sundays.
If you haven’t come yet to a Wednesday night soup supper and worship yet, please come. You will be blessed.