Lent begins this week, a time of spiritual journeying. Where are you going in your spiritual life and your parenting life right now? I have some ideas and suggestions for you in this post to ponder and meditate on.
I have been thinking about Lent as this spiritual journey. In the Episcopal tradition, we think of preparing for Lent and Lent as this spiritual journey in preparing for Easter. On any journey, one would pack bags and prepare for travel. Lent is much the same way; we use something called “a rule of life” to prepare for Lent and Easter. There is a lovely article about what this entails here: http://fullhomelydivinity.org/articles/Preparing%20for%20Lent.htm but the main components for Lent include:
**Self-examination and repentance and specifically attempting to reconcile with those we have hurt or alienated throughout this year (also the use of sacramental confession to a priest)
**Prayer, fasting, and self-denial
**Reading and meditating on God’s holy Word.
In parenting, I wonder what creating a ‘rule of life” for Lenten parenting would look like for you?
Would your self-examination of yourself led you to reconcile with yourself? Would it lead you to forgive yourself for not being perfect? Would it lead you to forgive your partner for not being perfect? Would it lead you to a Family Mission Statement or a parenting plan to do things better? Anglicans have a strong belief in responsible freedom. How will you be responsible in making yourself better in setting the tone for your family?
If you fast and deny yourself, can you deny yourself negative self-talk? Complaining? Too much explanation to small children? Can you take up a journey of prayer and meditation? Can you focus on finding a spiritual path even if you do not have one currently?
In reading and meditating, can you read something spiritual that is uplifting to you? Can you read something positive that will help you in your parenting? How can you renew and refresh yourself after the long dark days of Winter?
More about Lenten parenting and Lent traditions tomorrow.