Lent and Optimism

The Christian season of Lent is associated with solemnity, sacrifice, and penance. However, at its core, Lent is a time of optimism, hope, and renewal. It is a season of deep reflection, self-examination, and spiritual growth that invites us to embrace the possibility of transformation and new beginnings.

Pope John Paul II captured the essence of Lent when he said, "Lent is a time of profound truth, which brings conversion, restores hope and, by putting everything back in its proper place, brings peace and optimism."

The Pope reminded us that Lent is not just about giving up something for 40 days, but about embracing a deeper sense of purpose, meaning, and faith.

Pope John Paul II

"Lent is a time of profound truth, which brings conversion, restores hope and, by putting everything back in its proper place, brings peace and optimism."

Read More on Christian Optimism

The Meaning Of Lent

Fast from judging others; feast on the Christ indwelling in them.
Fast from emphasis on differences; feast on the unity of all life.
Fast from apparent darkness; feast on the reality of light.
Fast from words that pollute; feast on phrases that purify.
Fast from discontent; feast on gratitude.
Fast from anger; feast on patience.
Fast from pessimism; feast on optimism.
Fast from worry; feast on trust.
Fast from complaining; feast on appreciation.
Fast from negatives; feast on affirmatives.
Fast from unrelenting pressures; feast on unceasing prayer.
Fast from hostility; feast on nonviolence.
Fast from bitterness; feast on forgiveness.
Fast from self-concern; feast on compassion for others.
Fast from personal anxiety; feast on eternal truth.
Fast from discouragement; feast on hope.
Fast from facts that depress; feast on truths that uplift.
Fast from lethargy; feast on enthusiasm.
Fast from suspicion; feast on truth.
Fast from thoughts that weaken; feast on promises that inspire.
Fast from idle gossip; feast on purposeful silence.
Gentle God, during this season of fasting and feasting, gift us with your presence, so we can be a gift to others in carrying out your work.


Read More: Optimism, Spirituality and Religion

A Prayer for Lent by Bishop Philip Huggins

Gracious God,

We give thanks for your goodwill.

In the very gift of life .
In the beauty of creation - an  echidna curled up in falling rain; the wonder in a child’s eyes as a butterfly dances.

In the wisdom revealed to your holy ones - like Julian  of Norwich who knew you are utterly kind and unassuming and so could say,” all will be well and all manner of things shall be well.”

We give thanks as we pray towards another Lent and Easter of illumination.

As we then ponder the life of Jesus.
His intentionality and request for our co-operation - sending our forebears in faith to find a donkey and a place to eat for his ride into Jerusalem and for the Last Supper.

As He leads us through the Pascal Mystery to the ground of our buoyancy in Resurrection energy.
We give thanks that therefore nothing can separate us from your love, vivid in Jesus.

In your good will, your grace, we are able to be infinitely optimistic.
Each new day, unto all eternity.

We pray now that our gratitude helps others, and always helps others.
Especially those for whom we pray.
Those who are on our hearts or who have asked for our prayers.....
This prayer, and much perhaps still making its way into words, we gather and pray in Jesus holy name. AMEN.

Written and Shared with us by Bishop Philip Huggins

Joe MacDonald, Methodist Minister, in "The season of Lent helps remind me of my strengths as a caregiver"

"As I start my journey through Lent, my experience with hope must serve as the foundation. In my life, I continue to face difficult circumstances. One day, I want to write a book about my struggles and how I overcame many obstacles. Yet the core and continuous thread that runs through any story I tell contains the belief that hope shows up in the most unexpected places. Hopefully, I’ll continue to call to mind the enduring power of optimism through a time of overwhelming circumstances."





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