Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, March 6, and ends on Easter Saturday, April 20. It signifies the 40-day period of suffering Jesus went through in the desert. People use the 40 days to fast, give up certain things, or perform some other form of self-denial. In the past, I had used this time to practice meditation and to work on areas in my life that I needed to get under control, like being more patient…still working on that!
This year I am going to do something different, and I would like you to join me. Before March 6, write down the names of 40 people with whom you are acquainted. In addition to your immediate relationships, the list can include people from your past, coworkers, members of your social clubs, workers at stores and restaurants you frequent who provided excellent service, teachers at your children’s school or college, and your local politicians. Need more people—add strangers. I pray for people who I see along my commute to work, and sometimes I smile and think to myself, “I wonder what the person would say if he/she only knew.”
But I digress…on the morning of Ash Wednesday, select the first name on your list, and say a prayer for the person. As you go about your day, continue to uplift the person in your thoughts, giving thanks and praise for his/her overall well-being; and if you know of a specific request that is needed, pray for a positive outcome. The next day, select the second name and continue in this fashion for the remaining days…keeping it up each day in a meaningful way. Folks, this will be a period of spiritual nourishment for us as we stay in constant awareness of Christ and His blessings on us.
If we all do this, I am positive there will be several people who will have you on their mind and will pray for you over the course of the 40 days!