Lutheran Church Extension Fund

Lenten Wellness: Spiritual!

Reading time: two minutes. I’m writing this on an airplane, having just heard the oxygen mask speech:  “Before you assist those traveling with you, take care of yourself first!”  The Word of God is the spiritual oxygen for the Body of Christ, the Church.  Pastor, before you point others to the cross and empty tomb, make the journey there yourself this Lent. Before we get much deeper into the season of the journey to Jerusalem, would you consider the great benefit both to you and to those who depend on you, of a brief, personal spiritual retreat sometime in the next few days? As I’m gliding through the clouds, I feel confident about reaching my destination in about an hour and twenty minutes knowing that my pilot has been there before and has a much better view of where we’re going than I do back here in coach.  The members of our worshiping communities count on us to lead them to places we’ve been ourselves. When supervising seminary field education students leading worship for the first time, they would often ask, “How did I do?  Did I do everything right?”  My typical response came to be, “I don’t know.  Did you sing to Jesus?”  It’s an occupational hazard that we can sometimes lead others in worship and reflection without having done so ourselves.  A mini-retreat could take place in a day, or spread over a few upcoming days with an hour or two set aside for your own, personal Lenten journey to the cross. This is a time for self-reflection and confession.  Have you visited with another pastor recently for private confession?  What would a deliberate experience of dying to your old sinful nature look like?  What devotional resource heightens your reflection on the Lord’s Passion, the cross He bore for you, the suffering Jesus bore in your stead?  What worship resource best prepares you to celebrate Easter with the fullness of joy?  Remember that our Sundays are little pauses from our forty day countdown.  Find time to marvel and wonder at the power of grace of the Lord’s resurrection. Take a look at your calendar right now.  Where can you create a little space for a mini-retreat of your own before April arrives?  How might you benefit?  How might those you serve be enriched if you got your dose of oxygen first? God bless you with a rich and blessed spiritual journey this Lent. Thanks for reading. A Congregational Wellness Weekend is designed to help create a ministry environment at your church or school where professional church workers can thrive and serve joyfully in their calling at top capacity. Let’s start the conversation today! Find more information on our website or contact Program Director Darrell Zimmerman to learn more.