Thursday, January 26, 2012

Preparing for Lent:: A Place at the Table



When Aaron handed me this book and I began reading through the introductory chapters, I was moved.  Being back home, in the midst of transition, repairing relationships, and yearning for something stable, one of our overwhelming emotions and thoughts has been this one..."How do we live out our convictions towards the poor now that we're home?  Given this clean slate, where everything feels wide open...how do we set up our new life here, leaving the right amount of space and resources available so we can continue to learn how to pour our life out for the hurting and destitute?"

Chris Seay's book seems like a timely gift.

"Can we embrace the truths of Christ if we do not embrace His posture?  His hands were exposed to disease and leprosy as He touched the sick.  His knee bent to the ground to wash the sullied feet of His friends.  His eyes lifted in prayer to the Father.  His body bowed and was broken to death.  As we learn to march in step with our Savior, we find that our swagger gives way to a lowly and humble way of walking." -- Chris Seay



A Place at the Table - Promo from Chris Seay on Vimeo.


It is with eager anticipation that we look forward to the season of lent, and specifically how this 40 days of focusing on poverty related issues will inspire change.  It's sobering to realize the plight of the poor and the condition of our souls are not two separate issues.  They are linked and deeply interwoven.  The fact that stifling poverty exists for so many around the world says a great deal about my own poverty.  We walk into this season of lent asking God to lead, comfort, satisfy, and heal the poor knowing we fall into that category.

Lent begins on Wednesday, February 22.

We'll share more excerpts from Seay's book between now and then in case you may want to purchase it.  The book is broken into 40 short readings to be used every day during Lent.  Each day's reading also contains a small section focusing on a country and person who needs prayer.  In addition, you can find a daily video that corresponds with each reading.

To buy the book:  A Place at the Table:  40 days of Solidarity with the Poor

To view the daily videos:  here's the link.

Growing up, I thought Lent was something reserved for my Catholic friends.  In my religious superiority, I never stopped to find out what my Catholic friends were actually celebrating.  When God graciously opened my mind a tiny bit, and I started asking questions instead of judging, I found that Lent is a time of preparation leading up to Easter.  It's a beautiful, focused season when believers can savor the story of the gospel, the meaning of the cross, and the hope of the resurrection. What a perfect time to ask God how these truths can bring about actual, tangible change in our lives and ultimately in this world.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing about Chris' book and videos. I think it's a great idea and something we'll also use during lent. Thanks for also sharing!

mbs said...

Thanks for sharing this. I would love to have something to focus our Lent devotions.

Cami Franklin said...

Okay girl - once again, God is using you. I'm so thankful you blog!!!

I leave for Haiti and ApParent Project in about 10 days (Feb. 6) - I am praying about my trip and all that I will learn and experience while I am there. I am also praying about the changes this will bring and what to do with all of it when I return.

Change, of course, is a process. It doesn't happen overnight. And for me this all began over a year ago when my husband spent a week in Haiti and then I "stumbled" on your blog.

I return on Feb. 13 - I have a feeling that this is going to be part of the "processing" I do when I return. This entry has once again stirred something deep within me and I've walked with the Lord long enough to know not to ignore it.

Thank you, sweet friend, for continuing to be open and honest and share your journey with us - especially when this has been a difficult process for you. That's what it's all about, right? Sharing our journey with others.

I think I will go order the book. God is working......

thistlewoodmanor said...

It's amazing how time spent working with people in another country can affect us. Although it was only a month, 18 years ago; the month I spent working in a Mexican orphanage has never left me; as I'm sure your time in Haiti will never be forgotten by you or your children. Thanks for the link to the book; it sounds like something I will get a lot out of.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for pointing out the way Lent prepares our hearts and minds for Easter. It gives us structure and focus that non-Catholic churches often lack until just days beforehand. I gladly embrace Lent as a Baptist and I get funny looks for it. Love you!

Amy said...

Love this idea. Thanks for sharing! Do you think it's appropriate for our young kids to participate? Like just watching the videos with us or whatever? We have two kids, five and under, and one on the way (via int'l adoption). Our oldest wants to someday love on little ones in an orphanage one day when she grows up, she really has a heart of compassion for the poor. She has taught me much in that regard. I'd love for her especially to participate, but do you think that'd be jumping the gun?

Fiveboys said...

Thought my comment was published but maybe not??? Anyway, I had asked if this was appropriate for children - like around ages 10-14? Wondering what your thoughts are.

Marla Taviano said...

I am totally not a spontaneous book-buyer, but I bought this one today (for my Kindle) just from seeing your fb post about it. Can't wait to dive in. Reading Margot Starbuck's Small Things with Great Love right now (also very good).

Hendrick Family said...

Hey ladies..

I'm going to take some time this weekend to look through the videos. My guess is that these are probably fine for most kids.

From what I've read, these videos are also supposed to be used in churches and small groups if a church chooses to go that route. So, I'm assuming they are appropriate for kids, but I'll watch most of them this weekend to make sure.

We were assuming our kids would watch the videos with us every day.

Heather

Janessa said...

Looks great. I'll definitely be using at least the videos

Tracy said...

Thanks for sharing about this book. Looking forward to reading it. We "did" Lent last year for the first time and it was such a sweet time for our family!

mandi said...

Us poor Protestants...I mean, we missed out on so much. I now observe lent, but prior to doing this as a grown-up, I too thought it was just for my Catholic friends. And I kind of loved it because we got fish every Friday in school.

I'm checking this book out fo sho. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this link. As a cradle southern baptist I never knew any "lint" outside of what was in my daddy's bellybutton :| :) I was blessed for a short season to be in an Episcopal church in Houston where I asked the priest about "lent". He encouraged me to take the journey and now, it is my favorite and most blessed time of year with the LORD. I'm looking forward to trying this book. Thanks! Sherri in GA

missing africa said...

just got our book in the mail... excited to see how the Lord really uses this in our hearts/lives. thank you for sharing!

Michelle said...

We are doing this particular fast (book) during Lent this year too. To go through it with my middle schoolers makes me totally giddy.