Saturday, March 18, 2017

There is a book by Group titled God Sightings, a companion guide to The One Year Bible that I recently ran across and it struck me that striving to notice God at work around us in our daily lives would be an excellent Lenten exercise.   “God Sightings”, learning to experience God every day, is a concept I was first introduced to during Vacation Bible School a couple of years ago.

The idea is that God is at work all around us but we neglect to see his presence in our daily lives.  Not because He isn’t there but because we fail to look.  When we actively look for how God is engaged in our lives we will be surprised by what we discover.  The exercise fosters faith and deepens relationships with God which is exactly what we are called to do during Lent.  

The premise for a Lenten exercise is simple; every day share your God sightings, the moments you recognized as special because God was involved at some level, while you sit around the dinner table with family members and discuss how God is shaping the world around us and the impact He has on our lives.   The companion guide book provides suggested Bible readings for each week and specific ways to look for God at work.  The following is a list of a few of the questions and suggestions provided in the book that seem particularly appropriate for examination during the six weeks of Lent.
Look around for commitment, total dedication, giving your entire self.  The athlete who goes the extra mile, the A+ student who does the bonus question too, the 50 year marriage etc.  That is the passionate response God is looking for from us as Christians.  Do you feel passionate about your faith?

Keep track of the services you provide for others and all the services you receive during the week.  Small acts of kindness, thoughtful actions to spare others, listening to someone; these things all matter because when you’re serving others you serve God as well.  How are you serving God?
What or who do you and the people in your life serve?   Celebrate the people whose lives reflect faith, hope and love as you observe them in action.  Pray for those that seem to be ruled by money, ego or fear.  Where are you in your relationship with God?   What rules your life?

Look around for temptations.  What tempts you or others?  Then invite God to strengthen you and forgive your weakness.  Accept God’s empowering mercy and grace. He wants us to depend on Him.
What is the best gift God has given you?  Do you feel content and satisfied?  Do you receive what you deserve for your efforts?  How often do you feel slighted?  The hard truth is we don’t really want what we deserve from God and maybe not from others either.  That we receive grace instead is the ultimate God Sighting.   We need to cultivate an attitude of gratitude and a positive outlook on life.
Look for situations where justice is being done….mercy is being shown……and how you and others are walking with God.  Where are these things happening?  Who is doing them and why?  Not all who serve mankind serve God….yet God can use them.  What is God calling you to do?

Prayer:  Father in Heaven help us to see you at work in the world around us so that we might experience a vibrant awakening in our faith and recommit ourselves to you this Lenten season.   We ask in Jesus name.  Amen

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