Lenten Prayers

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Each week of Lent we are focusing on a different chapter from Baselia Schlink’s book, You Will Never Be the Same.  On Mondays at dinner we take our meal in silence and then read together a chapter from Baselia’s book.  Through the rest of the week we pray a special prayer for grace at the meals based on the the chapter we read at the start of the week.  We are in Week 2 of Lent and already this practice is bringing a blessing to our spirits.

The introspection encouraged at Lent need not be a morbid, discouraging activity, but instead be seen as a beautiful way to allow the Lord to gently touch our hearts and free us from attitudes and behaviors that are robbing us of joy and hindering our relationships.  God never exposes in order to crush.  Sometimes it’s hard to see how selfish and hurtful we have been, but that’s never the last word.  Jesus’ unfathomable love is always the final say, and we are held tightly in His arms of grace.

Here are the chapter references and meal prayers for the first two weeks of Lent (I’ll post the rest each week):

Lent 1 (Week of March 1)
You Will Never Be the Same p 154 “Self-Righteousness: Self-Justification”

“Father, let us open our hearts and listen to others when people say the truth about us.  We want to accept this practical help to be freed from the curse of blind self-righteousness.  It is so hard for us to hear others tell us about our weakness and our mistakes.  But we want to accept it as Your special offer of love to us, because Your warning voice comes to us through such people.  We want to give thanks for every person who calls our attention to our mistakes.  And when this does not happen, we want to ask the people around us to tell us everything.  And even if the admonitions and accusations are not one hundred per cent true, we want to use the opportunity to break our self-righteousness and self-justification.

“Bless O Lord, this food to our use, and us to Your loving service; and make us ever mindful of the needs of others.  Lord, in Your mercy…Hear our prayer.”

Lent 2 (Week of March 8 )
You Will Never Be the Same p 75 “Disrespect: Negation of Authority”

“Father, let us reject the arguments of Satan that say, ‘We all have the same rights’, or, ‘No one should have a position of authority above anyone else’.  We don’t want to be like him and fall because of disrespect toward You and those over us.  It is hard to admit the fact that we are exceedingly proud and do not want to be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.  But we want to respect those whom we are supposed to respect and obey them by doing everything they demand that is not against our consciences.  We accept your offer of a new and blessed relationship of respect for one another – one that stems from voluntary love and respect of those who deserve honor.

“Bless O Lord, this food to our use, and us to Your loving service; and make us ever mindful of the needs of others.  Lord, in Your mercy…Hear our prayer.”