Have you heard about the Way of Love? These seven practices—Learn, Pray, Worship, Bless, Go, Rest, Turn—make up a commitment to follow Jesus that will transform your life.

Lent, the ancient season of preparation for Easter, is a traditional time for Christians to renew our faith by making a change in our daily lives. If you’re not sure where to start—or if you’re looking for something to share with your congregation—try one of these ideas, each corresponding to a Way of Love practice.

Photo above by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Life Transformed—The Way of Love in Lent

Lent with the Way of Love

If you’re eager to explore the Way of Love with your congregation or small group, Lent is a great time to begin. Journey together with Jesus through Lent into Easter with Life Transformed—The Way of Love in Lent. This new curriculum from the Episcopal Church is available as a series of seven adult forums (corresponding to the seven practices of the Way of Love and the seven weeks of Lent) or as a Quiet Day format suitable for use at a day-long retreat. Both formats tie the seven practices of the Way of Love to the readings used at a traditional Easter Vigil service.

LEARN: Join the Bishop’s Lenten Bible Study

Way of Love Practice:
LEARN—Reflect on Scripture each day, especially Jesus’ life and teachings. 

If you want to spend more time with Scripture, joining a bible study group is a great way to stay motivated. But if you’re a busy parent or working full-time, it can be hard to find a group bible study that fits your schedule.

This Lent, Bishop DeDe Duncan-Probe of the Episcopal Diocese of Central New York is hosting a live online Bible study at noon on four Thursdays. In each session, the bishop and a different guest will reflect on a passage from Luke’s Gospel (which you’ll hear again at your local Episcopal church the following Sunday). They’ll also answer your questions about the reading and respond to your comments.

You can join the bible study on your lunch hour on Facebook Live or via Zoom video-conference, or visit cnyepiscopal.org to view recordings on-demand.

PRAY: Practice breath prayer

Way of Love Practice:
PRAY—Dwell intentionally with God each day.

There are so many ways to pray, but that doesn’t mean that everyone knows how to do it (as St. Paul can attest!)

Over at GrowChristians, Tina Clark shares a simple, beautiful breath prayer that she’s planning to teach her teenage boys this Lent. It’s an accessible practice suitable for all ages. Plus, see how she plans to talk about the Lenten journey using the striking video above.

WORSHIP: Make time for church

Way of Love Practice:
WORSHIP— Gather in community weekly to thank, praise and dwell with God.

There are six Sundays between Ash Wednesday and Easter. This Lent, could you consider making a commitment to attend each week? Or what about changing it up by visiting a neighboring church you haven’t tried before?

You can find locations and service times for Episcopal churches in CNY here:

BLESS: Discover new ministries with the UTO Devotional Calendar

Way of Love Practice:
BLESS— Share faith and unselfishly give and serve.

The United Thank Offering’s devotional calendar is a daily scavenger hunt that helps you give back every day in Lent! Before you begin, prayerfully pledge an amount—a dime or a dollar—that you’ll give for each item you’ll count in your home or community. Along the way, you’ll learn about some of the inspiring and creative ministries, funded by offerings like yours, that are supported by the United Thank Offering this year.

GO: Focus on Service with Episcopal Relief & Development

Lent with the Way of Love
Way of Love Practice:
GO—Cross boundaries, listen deeply, and live like Jesus.

Episcopal Relief & Development reminds us that God is present when we come together to work for lasting change. Their 2019 Lenten meditations, authored by faith leaders across the church, will ground and challenge you, renewing your determination and energy for service. Sign up to receive a daily e-mail meditation, or order  your free daily Lenten meditations booklet (bundles of 25) from Forward Movement.

REST: Take a break

Lent with the Way of Love

Photo by Sophie Elvis on Unsplash.

Way of Love Practice:
REST—Receive the gift of God’s grace, peace, and restoration.

It’s easy to make Lent a season of doing—with prayers, practices, devotions, and new commitments. at church But what about just being?

Consider setting aside a sacred weekly Sabbath time this Lent. Think about what that might mean to you: setting down your phone? Forgetting about the chores? Asking someone else for help?

If you need inspiration for rest, check out these articles recommended by the Way of Love team of the Episcopal Church:

Your TURN: How will you observe Lent?

Way of Love Practice:
TURN—Pause, listen and choose to follow Jesus.

Jesus has called each one of us to follow the Way of Love into new life.

The journey of Lent is different for each person as, with God’s help, we re-orient our lives toward Jesus—again, and again, and again, and again.

As you take time to pause, listen, and choose God today, let us know: what will Lent look like for you?

Share your Lenten commitment in the comments!

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