Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, the first day of the pre-Easter season known as Lent. The forty days of Lent (actually 46 if we include Sundays) are generally regarded as a time of fasting and abstinence in traditional Christian churches. But I think we’ve left behind the idea of a judgmental God who really likes it when we punish ourselves by taking care not to enjoy our life experiences.
Charles Fillmore, co-founder of the international Unity movement, constructed one of his best-known books – Keep A True Lent – around the idea of Lent as “a season of spiritual growth, a time for progressive unfoldment.” He recognized that the most important ‘fasting’ we could do would be to abstain from old forms of limited thinking, replacing them with a brand new sense of who we are, how the power we call God expresses through us, and what the true spiritual purpose is to this human experience. I’ve been following his Lenten structure for many years now, and I always find it a really important spiritual spring cleaning, clearing out the harmless but annoying clutter that has accumulated over the past twelve months.
Many of you have reported that you find the process useful as well; so from now through Easter Sunday we will be devoting these Random Thoughts to gently clearing away the obstacles of false belief that may hindering the free flow of divine energy within us.
We often assume that such a process will require some form of spiritual jackhammer at the very least; but Fillmore describes the process as simply “brushing away cobwebs,” so that our true light can shine. After all, it is a basic spiritual truth that change in the outer is at best temporary unless it is accompanied by a change in consciousness. That change in consciousness will be the true purpose of these 46 daily lessons.
In addition to Charles Fillmore’s Lenten study, we will refer often to Lent, a wonderful collection of writings by the Anglican mystic Evelyn Underhill.
Today I am centered and fearless as I enter the spiritual process of Lent. I know that this process will prepare me for a glorious experience of creative possibility as I embrace the true sense of personal resurrection that Easter represents. Thank you, God!