From Winter Into Lent

Think

It is SO the end of winter (so we hope!). How do you manage yourself at this time of year? I suggest remembering that spring is on its way (as is Lent – not what I’d call a happy time, but a good time for introspection and life evaluation). I also suggest remembering that the end of winter is temporary, that spring is almost here, and that you can do what you need to do to get there – including reaching out for help if you need to. We can do this!

This week we read most of 4 Maccabees. deSilva notes “The author’s mastery of Greek composition and rhetoric, his familiarity with Greek philosophical debates about the mastery of passions, his awareness of other Greek ethical conversations (such as the characteristics of the wise, free person; the nature of brotherly and sisterly love; and the nature of love for offspring), and his familiarity even with conventions of Greek tragedy show how fully ‘hellenized’ a Jew could be without sacrificing commitment to, and observance of, the Torah and its distinctive way of life in all its particulars” (p. 34-35)

What lessons might 4 Maccabees have for those of us who are Christians living in the midst of modern American life? Or, how might 4 Maccabees help us live our faith in the midst of the culture we are in?

This week we read Part 2,  “Managing Your Time,” Chapter 11, “Time Management Step #4: TALLY Your Time and REVIEW Your Weekly Progress” of The Lifelong Activist, in which we tally and review the time we have recorded on the Sample Time Budgeting / Tracking Form.

How’s your time budget working? C’mon over to People of the Books, our online book club in which we discuss this book and whatever else is on your mind or heart!

Pray

Our prayer practice for the duration of Lent will coincide with what my church, Compton Heights Christian Church, is doing – reading and praying through Boundless Compassion: Creating a Way of Life by Joyce Rupp. As we begin, read the Introduction and How to Use This Book. About how Jesus lived out compassion, Rupp notes that while Jesus’ compassion took the form of relieving individual suffering, “Jesus also challenged those whose policies, regulations, and personal behavior caused or contributed to suffering. As his voice for justice gained strength, so did the voices of those who wanted him destroyed. Jesus knew both the risk and the price to be paid for being committed to compassion.” (p. 13-14)

What risk and price might you have to pay for being committed to compassion in the way of Jesus?

Act

Check out the Find Your FBCO Map to find your local faith-based community organizing affiliate and connect with the people who are working together to live out their dreams of a more just world! What’s going on in your living of the Gospel? Let us know in the comments, in our e-mail discussion group, or on social media.

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