L N T : 1 7

An artistic response to the Lent season. Most inspiration will be following Richard Rohr's book "Wonderous Encounters: Scripture For Lent". Enjoy.

LNT01 - MAR. 1ST

Ash Wednesday

Prayer: “God, give me the desire to desire what you want me to desire.” 

May I begin anew in doing your actions, and not my own.

LNT02 - MAR 2ND

Good Decisions

Prayer: ““Lord, show me how to make good decisions and then be willing to learn what they really ask of me.”” 

Let me be not afraid to make a decision, and accept the complexities and 'not realizing it was this/or could be this way' and just accept Jesus's way. Rohr talks about dualistic thinking and non-dualistic thinking. That really struck me. 

Rohr talks about dualistic thinking and non-dualistic thinking. That really struck me.  It empowered me as well. Make the decision, with hopeful discernment, then accept the complexity of that path, embrace the both-and's, and fight to be guided by Jesus.

LNT03 - MAR. 3RD

What Can I Let Go?

Prayer: “God, what is it that you want me to let go of this Lent? Is it other than what I think?”

Let me not act and fast for my notice, but to do it for actual good, and for nothing else.

Rohr talks about how Isaiah brought up in his writings that people were essentially using fasting to point towards them while neglecting social justice. God wants us to fast ourselves and pour out love, social justice and true devotion. 

'Isaiah says explicitly that God prefers another kind of fasting which changes our actual lifestyle and not just punishes our body. (The poor body is always the available scapegoat to avoid touching our purse, our calendar, or our prejudices.) Isaiah makes a very upfront demand for social justice, non-aggression, taking our feet off the necks of the oppressed, sharing our bread with the hungry, clothing the naked, letting go of our sense of entitlement, malicious speech, and sheltering the homeless. He says very clearly this is the real fast God wants!' Rohr breaking it down.

LNT04 - Mar. 4th 2017

Where Am I Trapped?

Prayer: “God, where am I trapped and unable to see it?”

Let me finally see and be aware of where I am trapped. What and where am I serving not you and let me break free of those shackles.

Rohr says: 'The same refrain from yesterday also continues in Jesus. He is again accused of eating with the wrong people at the house of another wrong person, Levi the tax collector. Anybody who cooperated with the Roman oppressors was by definition and social position a “sinner.” Jesus is “cooperating with evil” and “complicit” in their sin, a good patriot or churchgoer would say both then and now. Yet Jesus reminds them that their definition of “holiness as separation from” is entirely wrong (see Leviticus 11: 24). Jesus has a different agenda and strategy, even though this wrong “law of holiness” continues in all immature religion to this day. Jesus has come to transform people, not to exclude them. He has come for the seeming losers, and not to create a country club for the supposed winners.'

Jesus again, showing how it is done.

LNT05 - Mar. 5th 2017

Wild Beasts

Prayer: “God, help me to distinguish my wild beasts from my angels. Help me to see how I often confuse one with the other.”

Let me not give into temptation, and instead drive my understanding and decision by the mind of Christ. 

Rohr is talking about Jesus in the wilderness, and this really stuck out to me:

'But let me point out something we almost always fail to notice. We can only be tempted to something that is good on some level, partially good, or good for some, or just good for us and not for others.' 

Mind blowing that there is good in temptation because temptation to me has a stigma of being bad. 

LNT06 - Mar. 6th 2017

Occasional Sheep

Prayer: “Loving God, allow me to be a sheep at least once in a while, and never let me forget that most of my life I have been a goat.”

A tough pill to swallow, but if I am honest, I am a goat most of the time. The sheep in me is rare, but glorious when he gracefully takes over.

LNT07 - Mar. 7th 2017

In Your Flow

Prayer: “Good God, keep me forever inside of your abundant and generous flow of mercy, toward me, through me, in me, and from me.”

Let me truly in your flow of grace, love and mercy. Let me be a conduit to others, so that I may not continue in my selfishness.

LNT08 - Mar. 8th 2017

A Sign

Prayer: “God of surprising journeys, help me to live my life forward, trusting that you are steering the ship. Help me to understand my life backward by seeing and forgiving the many ‘signs of Jonah.’”

Let me cease to be wicked in my continual testing mentality. Let my heart observe you and believe.

LNT09 - Mar. 9th 2017

As You Would Want Done Unto You

Prayer: “God, if you ask us to treat others as we would have them treat ourselves, then help me to believe that you operate in just the same way. You must treat me exactly as I would want to be treated—at my truest and best level.”

Oh man, the amount of trust involved here is the whole ballgame. If I believe I am worth it to the Lord, then that means everyone else is as well. That means my perpetration on others is indeed against God, for I trample on his beloved.

LNT10 - Mar. 10th 2017

I Can Be Like You?

Prayer: “Creator God, could it be true that you give me my human dignity and significance by asking so much of me? Do you respect me so much to hope that I could actually be like you?”

Let me drink in that you want me to be holy, and to be like you.

LNT11 - Mar. 11th 2017

Peculiar

Prayer: “God, I have to be honest with you. I am not sure I know how to do this. I am not sure I want to be one of your ‘peculiar’ people.”

Let me try my best, let me not get too discouraged. 

LNT12 - Mar. 12th 2017

Paths

Prayer: “Jesus, are such experiences just about you or are they also about us? Do you want us to think higher of you, or higher of ourselves because of you? Why do you take us along on such journeys at all?"

Let me understand your purpose, no matter what the outcome. Let my small mind be expanded for your purpose.

LNT13 - Mar. 13th 2017

Mirror Masks

Prayer: “Mirror me like a magnet, good God. Don’t let me be drawn into false, unhappy, or accusing faces. You are always and forever the Good Parent, and I long to see your face”

“Full measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be poured into your lap, because the measure you measure out with will be measured back to you.”

Luke 6: 38

LNT14 - Mar. 14th 2017

To Be A Server

Prayer: “Humble God, make us like you. You do not lord it over us, but wait patiently for us to change. May we do the same with our brothers and sisters on the journey.”

 

Let me stop serving myself and start serving my neighbor. Let me be transformed into you.

LNT15 - Mar. 15th 2017

To Drink

Prayer: “Well, God, I sure do not like to hear this, but show me how it might be true in my life. Do I also ‘kill’ others as a substitute for those necessary deaths to myself?”

“From the cup I drink of, you shall indeed also drink.... Among the Gentiles, those who have authority lord it over others and make their importance felt. It must not be like that with you! Anyone who aspires to greatness among you must serve the rest, and anyone who wants to rank first among you, must serve the needs of all.”

Matthew 20: 23, 25–27 

LNT16 - Mar. 16th 2017

Abyss

Prayer: “God of life and death, help me to choose life now, help me to recognize love now, help me to see the poor in our world who long to eat the scraps that fall from our tables.”

Lord, help me cross the chasm, the abyss of my heart and onto the side of life. Bring me to the other side.

LNT17 - Mar. 17th 2017

Cornerstone

Prayer: “Patient God, is it really possible that so many of us could be that wrong? Why do we prefer the winners to the losers, when you were clearly one of the ‘losers’ and always on the side of the ‘losers’?”

LNT18 - Mar. 18th 2017

Coming Home

Prayer: “Well, good God, if this is true, I have had it all wrong up to now! Who are you? And who am I?”

“While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him....‘ Quick, bring out the finest robe and put it on him, put a ring on his finger and shoes on this feet. Take the fatted calf and kill it. Let us eat and celebrate because this son of mine was dead and has come back to life. He was lost and is found.’ And the celebration began!”

Luke 15:20-24

LNT19 - Mar. 19th 2017

Spring

Prayer: “God of Spirit and Truth, expand my mind, but even more my heart to receive your great and universal good news. I know that no change of heart happens without a change of mind, and no change of mind happens without a change of heart. Get me started in one place or the other!”

Read the entire story of the Samaritan woman (John 4: 1–42) in your preferred Bible.

LNT20 - Mar. 20th 2017

Inner Vs. Outer

Prayer: “God of Israel, Samaria, Sidon, and Syria, are you really all the same God? Can I allow you to be free, or should you follow our rules and our theology?”

LNT21 - Mar. 21st 2017

Fires Of Delivery

Prayer: “God of Compassion, Mother and Father of all Mercies, do not let us shame ourselves—or the wonder of your name—by living outside of the wondrous loop of your forgiveness and mercy.”

LNT22 - Mar. 22nd 2017

Law

Prayer: “God of Law and God of Love, get me started, hold on fast to me, but also keep me going in the right direction, which is always toward you.”

Rohr talks about how the Law is a starting point to head us down the right path, but it is not the end all, be all. A small container. Hmm, interesting.

LNT23 - Mar. 23rd 2017

I Am Evil Because I Fight It?

Prayer: “Warrior God, Crucified Christ, teach me how evil is really overcome. Do not let me be part of the problem, but the beginning myself of the answer.”

Rohr talks about how it is strange that people throughout history who have fought evil have usually been branded evil. Rohr brings the verse of where Jesus is accused of being the 'Prince of Devils' because he casts out devils. Strange indeed.

LNT24 - Mar. 24th 2017

One Love of Many

Prayer: “One God, you make all things one. Even my own heart, and even one with the hearts of others, and most unbelievably one with yours.”

LNT25 - Mar. 25th 2017

Small Me

Prayer: “Merciful God, all I can give you, and all you ever want, is who I really am. This little woman or little man that I am now gives you back my only and true self."

May I please not sacrifice for me, but for you. May I finally desire and know you, and my sacrifice be for your kingdoms benefit.

Hanging out on Luke 18:9-10 on this one.

LNT26 - Mar. 26th 2017

Blind

Prayer: “God of all Light and Truth, just make sure that I am not a blind man or woman. Keep me humble and honest, and that will be more than enough work for you.”

Destroy the rags of my blindfold and let me finally see.

 

LNT27 - Mar. 27th 2017

Made New

Prayer: “God of all names and all love, give us hearts to include all that you are willing to include, to forgive all that you so easily forgive, and to join you in doing something truly “new” on this earth.”

Hanging out on Isaiah 65:17-18 and John 4:50, 53.

 

LNT28 - Mar. 28th 2017

I Want To Be Healed

Prayer: ““Healing God, give me the courage to move forward, and help me to see that my deepest sin might be my unwillingness to keep growing.””

Talking about the man at the pools of Bethesda. Do I make excuses for not wanting to be healed?

LNT29 - Mar. 29th 2017

Embrace

Prayer: “God of the judgment I once feared, you have now drawn close to me like a mother. As a child does at the breast, I find myself delighting in your own delighting and delightful face.”

This one was really touching.

LNT30 - Mar. 30th 2017

Judge

Prayer: “Just God, if you are the judge, then I will happily accept your witnesses, your evidence, and your conclusions. Because I always know that your only criterion is to be true to yourself, and you are infinite Love and Mercy.”

LNT31 - Mar. 31st 2017

America-centric

Prayer: “God of loving truth, keep me from the world of gossip and accusation. Do not let me ‘kill’ others, even in my mind or heart.”

Please Lord, if there is anything you outright do for me, please.... don't let me identify people until I know them through your eyes.

LNT32 - Apr. 1st 2017

Going Home

Prayer: “God of All Authority, I place my trust in you, which is often to feel alone and without reassurance on this earth.”

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“You do not see any of the Sanhedrin believing in him, do you? Or the Pharisees? Only this lot that knows nothing about the law—and they are lost anyway!... And each went off to his own house.” John 7: 48, 52

LNT33 - Apr. 2nd 2017

Break Free

Prayer:“Good God, the creator of light and darkness, You who move the sun and the stars, move us into the place of light, a light so large that it will absorb all the darkness.”

Rohr talks about how Jesus in John 11 is saying we can be free from Death; As he raises Lazarus. But, also that death is something that will happen, but shall pass. Like the day and the night. What a thing to ponder.

LNT34 - Apr. 3rd 2017

Master Of Love

Prayer: “God of love, you made love so important for our salvation, that you took the risk of us doing it poorly, as we all do. Keep us free from throwing stones at others, so we can see our own clumsy attempts at divine love.”

To me, Jesus in this act shows his true super hero-ness(besides the cross). Way greater than anything Iron Man could do or accomplish. Jesus, lifting one finger, and waiting patiently - disarms and transforms. No violence occurred, no harsh words were said. In fact, more lives than whom Jesus defended were most likely changed. Are you kidding me, and all done in a non iron suit. Just saying. Lord, maybe one day I can be an agent of your kingdom in a relatively close manner to what Jesus did. Is it even possible?

LNT35 - Apr. 4th 2017

Physician

Prayer: “Dear and Divine Physician, I need all of the medicine you are willing to offer me. Give me what I can handle, when I can handle it, and may I let you be the Handler.”

LNT36 - Apr. 5th 2017

Open My Mind

Prayer:“God of perfect freedom, open spaces inside of our minds, our hearts, and our memories, so we can just begin to be free. Do not let me be hardened against anyone of your creatures, so that I cannot hear and respect their truth.”

LNT37 - Apr. 6th 2017

Reflections

Prayer:“My God, this changes everything. Let it be true for me. Let me see what you saw. Allow me to know that I and all of us are reflections of the Eternal Glory.”

LNT38 - Apr. 7th 2017

Identity

Prayer: “Good and Generous God, why do you have such a hard time giving yourself away? You want to share your very self with us, your own divine nature, and we will not allow it.”

LNT39 - Apr. 8th 2017

Scapegoats

Prayer: “Jesus, our Scapegoat, you forever show us on the cross both the human problem and the divine solution. Help me to be part of your solution and to stop creating and persecuting scapegoats. I now know that I might just be killing you.”

LNT40 - Apr. 9th 2017

Path

Prayer: “Lord Jesus, if you are indeed the Lord of History, then you are showing us the plan, direction, and meaning of the human journey. I want to speak like never before that ‘Jesus Christ is Lord.’ Now it is not an assertion of dominance or rightness over anybody else, but only a willingness to trust and follow your humble path.”

LNT41 - Apr. 10th 2017

Servant of Servants

Prayer: “God of love and justice, let me know and live that they are not separate. Loving people will do justice, and just people will do their work with love and respect.”

LNT42 - Apr. 11th 2017

Stack Of Alone

Prayer: “Solitary Jesus, you get more alone as the week goes on, till all you have is a naked but enduring hope in God. Do not bring me to such a test, I would not know how to survive.”

LNT43 - Apr. 12th 2017

Breaking Hearts

Prayer: “Faithful Jesus, your faith was tried just like mine, but even more. Yet you trusted that you would not be put to shame, and ‘into God’s hands you entrusted your spirit.’ Give me courage to do the same in the time of trial.”