I look forward to Ash Wednesday, and Lent, and the whole season leading up to Easter. It helps me start the year right by being intentional to walk closer to God as I take time to repent, and reflect, and self-examine. But this year, it’s been hard to find the time. Even getting to my small one-page-a-day devotional seems like an uphill battle. My husband is working more hours, I’m picking up extra shifts, and our little ones seem to be needier than ever. Not to mention the current pandemic impacting the entire world. Families are schooling their children, many are learning how to work from home, and there continues to be plenty of needs to juggle. All this makes Holy Week tougher to engage.
There are endless distractions and tasks that I get tempted to prioritize over my faith. (Sound familiar?!) So, each day I have to answer this question: What will I sacrifice or do differently so that I can put Jesus first?
Because the truth is I can’t do it all. I’m not superwoman; though, on a particularly productive and peaceful day, I have felt pretty close. But those days are fewer and further between than I’d like to admit. I have to be intentional to slow down and give up some of my unrealistic expectations to keep my faith off the back burner. It’s God that gets me through. It’s Him who is my source of strength and who guides my steps each day. I need Him more than anything (yup, even a clean house).
Holy Week will be over before we know it. The whole Lenten season has gone by terribly fast. But it’s challenged me to make more time for God amidst the chaos and to-do lists, and the trials and hardships, to choose to make God the priority and remember what Jesus sacrificed.
This is a truly unique time of year where we as followers of Jesus get to enter into and remember what Jesus did for us. To be intentional to consider the brutality endured, the deep injustice, the blood shed, and the life He laid down. The Cross is powerful because Jesus suffered what I believe none of us could for the reasons He did. I couldn’t imagine giving my life for this world or offering up the life of my child for it, either. But God did all that and so much more because of His amazing love for each of us.
Our sins were covered on Calvary. Our sicknesses, our shortcomings, our errors, everything we’ve done to hurt others and sin against God was forgiven when Jesus’ body was broken and hung on the cross. I can hardly comprehend all that Jesus’s death accomplished, and I know that this time of year helps me gain a deeper understanding, and fills me with unspeakable gratitude that He died for me so that I could have eternal life with Him. He took away my guilt, and shame, and set me free from death. What glory!
For the One who loves me fiercely and unconditionally, I want to set aside time each day to talk to, worship, and connect with.
If you feel like me and wonder where the season went and how it’s already Holy Week, don’t worry, it’s not too late to make the time and space in your heart to reflect on what Jesus did for you and the whole world.
Over the next few days, you can still get connected. Here are a few ideas to help you find time for faith during holy week.
1. Read through the final chapters of the Gospels of Matthew (chapters 26-28) or John (chapters 17-21).
2. Check out the Bible app (YouVersion) to follow a devotional.
3. Set aside time each day for reflection and prayer about what this season means to you.
Let's ready our hearts for Easter Sunday and the celebration of serving a resurrected King!
Author: Pamela Palmer