For me as a child, brought up in the Christian church, Lent was when I gave up eating chocolate and sweets for 6 weeks. I am not sure that I knew why I had to do this – I did know it was expected of me. I remember feeling quite pleased with myself for seeing this through, though not so good at the end of Easter Sunday, after eating a big chocolate egg or two!
After I was led to Unity in 2002, some 25 years later, I learnt that Lent is a period of time when we can spiritually prepare for Easter. We can of course do this by not taking in certain foods or drink. Controlled fasting is a good spiritual and physical practice. However, this season of Lent can have a much deeper meaning for us. So, what is that?
Charles Fillmore, Unity co-founder with wife, Myrtle, suggested using the time of Lent to release negative thoughts and feelings, so we could wake up to the abundance of life in and around us.
Mr Fillmore taught the practise of denials and affirmations. When we deny the power of previously held ideas and feelings over us, we can more easily release and let them go. Then we can discover our true light, wisdom, joy and peace that was always within us but not known. This we call revealing the Christ within us and is our spiritual transformation
To be honest, giving up chocolate for 6 weeks is much easier that giving up all negative thoughts and feelings! It is, without doubt, an ongoing practice; one that I have been practising for many years!
However, it has been this practice of release, which has enabled me to more fully connect with the power within (also described as God, Presence, Love, All That Is). Through this practice, I am being changed.
I feel sure this will be a life-long journey. Yet I know the more I release old thoughts, feelings, ideas and beliefs that I now recognise simply hold me back and keep me stuck in hard and difficult experiences, I find more peace, joy, freedom and well-being.
It is without doubt a worthwhile journey – this one of transformation. As you prepare to start Lent, we invite you to let us be part of your practise. Together we can fast and let go of old patterns, to claim and live new ones.
You can do this by using Unity’s 2020 Lent booklet, Fasting and Feasting 2020. We will be reading from it every morning as part of our 9am Daily Word prayer meetings and you can order it here …
You can also join us at our Saturday workshop, Spring into Lent, 29th February, in Maidenhead
Let this be a time of transformation for you – make it real for it is, without any doubt at all, worth it.