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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Walking through Lent with Francis of Assisi

Each step will help renew your prayer life

Lent is a time for looking inward. We're often too busy to be introspective — it might even seem to be a waste of time or self-indulgent — as our lives are filled with good work for others and necessary activity of all kinds. But as we begin to see an occasional thaw outside and a sliver more sunshine, we might slow down and spend more moments on our relationship with God.

Lent is that time of year which, as Shakespeare says in one of his sonnets, "thou mayest in me behold." My many other responsibilities — as father, spouse, employee, son and friend — don't fall away. But my role as a child of God takes center stage.

Lenten hymns cause me to reflect more than usual while I sing, and the lessons from the Hebrew Scriptures make me stop and think. That glorious lesson from Isaiah for Lent, for instance, must mean something that is vitally important for me today. During these 40 days, I'm better able to understand its possibilities:


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