It’s Lent. The church season before Easter. It’s not in the Bible, but I think Lent came to be because it was understood that faith gets stuck. We forget.

Even in our faith, stuff piles up. We don’t want to see what’s hanging in the dark corners of the closet. The ways we turned from God. The times we were selfish, greedy or just plain rude. Way, way in the back of the drawers are the devotional we didn’t read, our Bible or our gratitude journal. Under the bed are our fears and anxieties and anger.

If you heard my brief reflection on Ash Wednesday you heard that I lifted up Marie Kondo as a Lent hero. You know about her, right? The 34-year old Japanese woman who is the author of “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up”. Her method of organizing is known as the KonMari method and consists of gathering all your belongings together and keeping only the ones that “spark joy” and then finding a place for everything.

That’s what Lent is about: sorting through the junk that’s piled up in our faith lives. Confessing to God where we’ve fallen short. Making room for God. These next weeks we follow Jesus on the way to the cross. A lot of muck comes up, especially at the end. But if we don’t go through our stuff and clean it out, it stacks up and keeps us from really getting to experience the joy. And Easter joy is what we’re building toward.

I’ve only watched one episode of Marie’s Tidying Up show on Netflix, but the family she worked with struggled to get to their joy. It was hard work. But worthy work.

Lent is a time for hard, but worthy work. We give up some thing or things to make room. We stop so that we can start. To find, not a superficial joy, but a real, deep down in our hearts joy.

N.T. Wright says, “Lent is a time for discipline, for confession, for honesty, not because God is mean…but because God wants us to know the joy of being cleaned out, ready for all the good things God now has in store.”

We’ll be looking for you tomorrow at 9:00 and 10:30 am as we gather to worship, praise and thank God. It won’t be the same without you.

Grace be with you,


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