Preparing for Worship – Leigh Curl, pastoral resident.
As of today, it feels like we have been in Lent for 368 days. Lent last year began on February 26, 2020, and then lockdown for COVID began about seventeen days later. I saw a tweet just before Easter last year that said, “This is the lentiest Lent that ever lent-ed.” Now, it’s become the “lentiest” and longest “Lent that ever lent-ed.”
A lot has been given up, lost, and even taken in the last 368 days. It has been an incredibly long year of Lent and I am completely exhausted. There’s really nothing more I care to give up.
At this point, I think we’re all doing good just to wake up and find a way to get through yet another day of this.
I have found it incredibly difficult as the days have gone by in this last year to wake up with a sense of wonder or joy. I rarely wake up with any type of excitement for what newness that day might bring.
Most mornings, I wake up to my dog Bells’ face directly in my own. Every single day, Bells wakes up with wonder, joy, and all of the excitement for the newness that day might bring. While I tire of the monotony of our daily routine, Bells never does. Every day when we go for a walk, you would think it was the first time she had ever gone on a walk and experienced the world outside. Lately on our walks I’ve been watching Bells and trying to find the same wonder, joy and newness that she finds in each step.
I have to admit that at this point, it’s hard for me to find wonder, joy or newness in worship. I am so weary of recording different worship elements to an empty sanctuary. I am weary of not being able to gather with any of you. I am weary of watching worship on my television. But then, I look at Bells next to me on the couch and am reminded that Sundays are a reprieve from Lent. I am reminded to find the wonder, joy and newness.
This morning as you prepare for worship, may you remember that on Sundays we get a break from Lent. Lean into that break and take a breath. Look for the wonder. Look for the joy. Look for the newness.