A Beatific Lent

Lent is one of my favorite church seasons. I love the idea of practicing something that ties me to centuries of spiritual seekers without the commercial distractions of Advent and Christmas. For forty days, I attempt to disrupt my own all-consuming addiction to myself and my ways in order to give God a chance to enter my life in a new way! Even though I’m glad to get that taste of whatever I’ve given up come Easter, I’m always a little sad to see it go. I love the Lenten life.

As a progressive Christian, I struggle with some of the traditional language of Lent, and I’ve spent some time reflecting on how to practice Lent in a way that makes sense to me without throwing out the essence of it. In these reflections, I work through some of the fundamental Christian concepts essential to Lent such as sin, repentance, grace, God’s will, taking up the cross, and more with my own progressive perspective.

Following my reflections, I’d like to offer another way of thinking about “The Beatitudes”. I’m looking at them as a model for an eight-fold spiritual path. For each of the eight Beatitudes of Matthew, I offer a lesson, questions, and a prayer as a guide to your own personal study or a group study.

My hope is that you will take a little time on your Lenten journey to explore how you might reclaim these ancient words, concepts, and teachings for your own spiritual life.

David Wilson-Burns

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