Lent 2023 | February 22 - April 6
Lent marks the 40 days before Easter. It is a symbolic reminder of Jesus' journey toward the cross. Forty is actually a very biblical number that always represents a long journey of faith, discovery, and life-change. At LiveOak Church we encourage everyone to take this journey. Use these days to re-focus on your relationship with God. Engage in a spiritual discipline that will help you draw closer to Jesus as you look forward to Easter.
Ways to Engage
Give something up and use the longing for it as a reminder to spend some time with God in prayer (maybe a meal, maybe a favorite treat, maybe an activity). Fasting is a physical reminder that it is only God who sustains us.
DAILY BIBLE & DEVOTIONAL
pick a devotional here
Take some time each day to read the scripture and / or work through a short devotion on the verses. This works best if you have a plan. You can read through a book of scripture (if you read one chapter a day, you can read both Matthew & Mark) or find a reading plan here.
PRAYER | SILENCE
find a prayer method here
Try carving out some time each day for prayer. You may want to experiment with a specific format or tool of prayer to guide you in this journey. Consider: silence as a form of listening to God, journaling, using the ACTS method, or praying lectio divina
Add a spiritual discipline - maybe a specific time of prayer each day, maybe scripture reading, maybe listening to worship music on your drive to work. You choose. Anything that will help you focus on your relationship with God can be a healthy practice during this time.
What is Lent
Lent is the 6 week period of time that begins on Ash Wednesday and culminates in the celebration of Easter. Traditionally, it is a period of time for Christians to repent (realign their lives toward God) and personally prepare to accept Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross as an action that brings grace and eternal life to each believer. During the period of Lent it is appropriate to meditate on our personal and corporate sinfulness. Because of this many Christian traditions encourage people to give up something or fast during this period (following Jesus' pattern of a 40 day fast in Matt. 4). Sometimes, it is appropriate for a person to add something to their life - a daily spiritual discipline for example - instead of giving something up. Whatever you add or give up during the Lenten period, it should be something that helps you focus on God, not on the world.
What does the word Lent actually mean? It comes from the German word for “Spring” because the 40 days takes place in the Spring. Originally the Lenten period was called quadragesima, meaning ‘the forty days.’
Aren't there actually 46 days between Ash Wed and Easter Sunday? It is tradition not to include Sunday in the count. Sunday is considered to be a day of celebration because it is the day of Jesus’ resurrection and is therefore not included in the days reserved for penitence and fasting.
Isn't this a Catholic thing? Although most people associate it with Catholicism, many traditions (including Presbyterians!) celebrate Lent. By taking the six week period of Lent as a time to be especially mindful of our need for God in our lives we can become more prepared and receptive of God’s grace at the Easter celebration.
Easter Events & Schedule
Easter Events & Schedule
We want your family to understand and celebrate the whole story of Easter. Put these events on your schedule:
Lent [February 22 - April 6] - try a spiritual practice to focus on your relationship with God (resources above)
Easter Journey & Egg Hunt [Palm Sunday - April 2 at 10:30am] - an experience for the whole family. You will move from station to station experiencing Jesus' last week. Stick around for an awesome Easter Egg Hunt for the children and hot dogs for all!
Good Friday [April 7 at 6:30 pm] - designed for the whole family to understand the full story of Easter. We gather Friday evening for 45 minutes to tell the story of Jesus' death on the cross. Although this is a subdued service, we have found it is a great experience for kids as well as adults.
Easter Services [April 9 at 10:30am] - family-oriented worship services on Easter Sunday. We celebrate the resurrection with fun and energetic LiveOak style worship gatherings.