March 15, 2021
Shalom: The Way to Hope (Week 4)
Beholding the beauty
One thing I ask of the Lord, that will I seek after: to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple. Psalm 27:4

The word “Lent” comes from the old English word meaning “spring.” Lent is springtime, a season for rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, and for Christians, the resurrection at Easter. Spring is a time for preparing for new life to grow.
Lent has traditionally been observed through the practice of self-denial such as fasting or giving up luxuries like chocolates in order to recreate the sacrifices that Christ made. But self-denial isn’t an end in itself. Self-denial is a way to clean our hearts and minds so that new life might have room to come in.

So, during this Lenten season, perhaps think about a spiritual practice to make space for God to come into our lives. Devote a few minutes each day to rest in God, away from the hectic pace and the weariness and anxiety of modern life. And like the Psalmist who desired to do this more than anything, gaze at God’s beauty and inquire in God’s temple. Spend time with God in wonder and make room in your hearts and minds so that new life may be formed in you. 

Lord, may we make time in our busy lives to find moments of reflection to gaze at your beauty and to rest in you so new life may grow in us. In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.
About the authors of "The Way to Shalom: A Lenten Journey to Peace and Wholeness" from Presbyterians Today (PCUSA): The Rev. Jimmie Hawkins, director of the Presbyterian Office of Public Witness in Washington, D.C., is joined by colleagues Catherine Gordon, associate for international issues; Christian Brooks, representative for domestic poverty issues; Sue Rheem, representative for the United Nations; and Ivy Lopedito, a mission specialist for the United Nations, in writing this year’s devotional. The Office of Public Witness is the denomination’s advocate and social witness in Washington, D.C. Learn more.
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