I have never been one to fast for lent. I did watch my Grandmother and Grandfather practice lent. They would cut out sweets for forty days. My darling Grandfather would slowly change it to all sweets that weren’t chocolate. Then finally, all sweets that weren’t chocolate and ice cream. And while fasting something for forty days is a good thing, I am not sure it would help my heart prepare for Easter. I have tried to do devotionals for lent the past few years, but it isn’t something I have kept up with for the whole forty days. By the 19th day, I am overwhelmed with life and I skip one day.. then two… then give up on the whole darn thing. Shame is not something I think lent should be producing.
While away on a spiritual retreat this weekend, my wonderful friend, Megan, mentioned that she wanted to add something, not take away something, for lent. My heart leaped. I knew adding a something small and meaningful was just what my heart desired. She had just learned the beauty of the prayer shawl or the tallit. She had a beautiful experience of spending five minutes under a tallit over our weekend. Tallit translates to “little tent.” In Psalm 61:4 is says, “Let me dwell in your tent forever! Let me take refuge under the shelter of your wings!” Yes! This is what my soul longs for. This is what I will be adding to my forty days of lent.
Each morning and evening during lent, I will spend three minutes under my tallit. I chose morning and evening so that I could start and end my days with God. I chose three minutes symbolizing the three days Jesus spent in the tomb. I will set aside time to shelter under His wings. I will take refuge in Him. I will sit and just be. Other than that, I do not have an agenda. I am not doing a devotional. I am simply sitting under His wings and taking refuge in Him in a purposeful and tangible way.
Would you like to join us in our journey? We are talking about our experiences here on this facebook page. If you do not have a traditional tallit, you could use a scarf or blanket. I did find a beautiful tallit on amazon. I like the idea of having a special garment set aside as my refuge and tent.
I am praying that our forty days, whether we fast something, add something, or do nothing at all, is a holy time that brings us closer to a big God that adores us.