Second Sunday of Lent 2023

“Lent is the most important time of the year to nurture our inner life. It is the time during which we not only prepare ourselves to celebrate the mystery of the death and resurrection of Jesus, but also the death and resurrection that constantly takes place within us. Life is a continuing process of the death of the old and the familiar, and being reborn again into a new hope, a new trust, and a new love. The death and resurrection of Jesus therefore is not just an historical event that took place a long time ago, but an inner event that takes place in our heart when we are willing to be attentive to it.”
– Henri Nouwen 
Reflecting on who we are.
As we continue our Lenten journey, this week is reserved for some self-examination. 
That might seem scary, but it’s another necessary step. 
Once again, find some quiet time this week to spend thinking about yourself, your actions, your goals, and your life. 
Consider these questions:
Are you using your time wisely?
Are you taking anything or anyone for granted?
Are you serving others?
What do you love about life right now?
What does your lifestyle reveal about your priorities?
Do you have a bad attitude toward someone or something?
Are there areas where you need more self-control?
Are you putting effort into your relationships?
Are you taking care of yourself physically?
What personal sacrifices are you making to serve others 
and to serve the Lord?
Are you lacking compassion in your life?
Are you being impulsive in your decisions?
What do your spending habits reveal about you?
Do you need to work on being more patient?
In which areas are you prideful instead of humble?
When you pray, what do you pray about? 
Do you pray about yourself only, or do you pray for others?
What are you sacrificing to be obedient to God?
Are your days filled with worry and dread?
Are you kind and loving to everyone?
Is there a habit you need to break?
Are you seeking the Lord and spending time in His word?
Does the joy of the Lord overflow in your life?
Are you holding on to something you need to release?
Is there someone you need to forgive?
What do you need to change about yourself?
This part of the journey is not to discourage you, but it is good to think about ourselves and where we need to improve. In future weeks, we’ll work on dealing with these reflections. For now think about these questions, contemplate them this week, and ask the Lord to show you areas needing improvement.
Lord, examine our hearts, test our thoughts, and expose our motivations as we reflect on this life you’ve given us.
The photo above is a spot in Colorado where I spent a lot of time reflecting and asking myself the questions above. “Test and evaluate yourselves to see whether you are in the faith and living your lives as committed believers. Examine yourselves!” – 2 Corinthians 13:5
“You Already Know” by J.J. Heller is a meaningful song to listen to this week as you reflect on your life. It’s comforting to know that God already knows everything and He holds every tomorrow. 
Click HERE to listen and follow the words below.
Everything around me seems uncertain.
My weary heart can’t take much more surprise.
I wish there was a point on the horizon.
Something I could see with my own eyes.
I need to tell you that I’m scared.
I feel completely unprepared.
And nothing’s what it was two weeks ago.
But you already know.
You already know.
Everything I’m scared of,
Everything I hope,
You hold my tomorrow
And all tomorrow holds.
You already know.
I can’t seem to find the easy answers.
Someday, I hope the suffering makes sense.
I just need to know that you are with me.
Even if you keep me in suspense.
We talk so much these days
Because I have so much to say.
You stay and listen to me closely even though
You already know.
You already know.
Everything I’m scared of,
Everything I hope,
You hold my tomorrow
And all tomorrow holds.
You already know.
Whatever I’m feeling.
Whatever is coming.
Whenever the ending.
You’re already there.
You go before me.
You go behind me.
Wherever I’m going
You’re already there.
You already know.
You already know.
Everything I’m scared of.
Everything I hope,
You hold my tomorrow
And all tomorrow holds.
You already know.
You already know.
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