Lent is a period of spiritual preparation for Easter, 40 days long. These days most people who observe lent give up chocolate, or coffee or some other small thing to focus their attention on God. 

You never thought when Lent began that you would give up:

  • restaurants
  • bars
  • visiting
  • going to church

your list may be even longer. 

Maybe you think that you've given up enough this Lent, but there are a few things you might not have considered giving up, things that would make your life better, and the burden of this lent lighter

"In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not overcome it." (Jn 1:4–5)

"For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ." (2 Co 4:5–6)

"Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life" (Php 2:14–16)

Church: This is our moment to shine! Three steps:

How great is Love?
As big as the heaven beyond the heavens - 
Where angels gape at the empty throne of thrones;
As small a cell in a virgin’s womb, where Love is grown;
As big as this creation whose founding Word has entered, humble;
As small as a manger, where Love is warmly bundled.
Love is bigger than all the hate of all the world,
Smaller than the awful cross that crucified the Lord;
Yet greater than death – bigger than the feeble tomb –
Which never could contain the Love once loved within a womb.

Absalom Day 5

This is not exactly how I preached it on Sunday at the church picnic. I forgot to record it, and so have reconstructed it from my 'copious' (i.e. nonexistent) notes. I’ve added some things I meant to say but didn’t, and probably left out some things that I did say. This service was held 5 days after my cell phone rang with the news of the death of one of my children, which puts some of the remarks into context. The text is the Gospel of Mark, although the parable is also in Matthew and Luke. SDG


A quick Lenten commentary on the four Gospels, chapter by chapter.

New 2-3 chapters will be published each day through Lent 2020.