Spiritual Practice

A Holy Experiment

Sandy Miller

I was almost through writing my Editor’s Note for the March/April 2014 issue of devozine when a power surge zapped my computer—and alas, those initial thoughts were gone. A quick reboot and I was busily writing. Minutes later (you guessed it) my screen went dark again! I jumped up and headed out the door, venting my frustration with a brisk walk. Then it hit me: Maybe those were not the words I needed to write!

Disconnected from email and the Internet, I opted for a low-tech approach—just in case. I began to read through this issue and to listen with my heart. Jotting down ideas that stood out for me and pondering them, I lost all track of time. What a gift! In those moments of quiet and focus, I began to see that these themes and stories were inviting me to experience Lent in a deeper way this year.

ma14cov300 ComingUPI hope you discover that invitation as well. During Lent (March 5–April 17, 2014), ponder the stories from your peers in this issue of devozine. Let them encourage you to come away from the busyness and distractions of your life, to find a sacred space in your room or in the great outdoors where you can spend time with God. In those moments, notice what keeps you from growing closer to God—the behaviors and attitudes that get you in trouble, that harm you or others. Pray for strength to give up these habits. Ask your tough questions; be honest about how it feels to live on the brink. And seek to cultivate the art of listening so you begin to hear and recognize God’s voice above the noise of the world. As you journey toward Easter, open your heart to encounter the radical love of Jesus, who calls you friend, offers you new life, and invites you to be his hands and feet in the world.

Make this time a holy experiment.
Choose to give up something or to take on something new that can bring you closer to God or make a difference in someone’s life or in the world:

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  • Give up complaining for Lent.
  • Pray every day for someone you find difficult to love.
  • Invite your family to eat together and say grace before each meal.
  • Give up Facebook, TV, or texting; and spend more time with God.
  • Explore your beliefs and questions with a trusted adult.
  • Read a passage of scripture each day, and discuss it with a friend.
  • Practice random acts of kindness whenever possible.

Be bold with this holy experiment! Your lenten sacrifice or practice may be a greater blessing than you can imagine.

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