Today is the fifth Sunday in Lent. Next Sunday we begin our walk through the Great Story…. In our Sunday school classes, we describe Lent as the season when God’s people get ready for the mystery of Easter. So: are you ready? How have your preparations been going?Have your Lenten practices and prayers opened some space in your heart to receive the power and grief and strangeness and joy of this story, all over again?
… I come to this Sunday, the last “normal” Sunday in Lent, wishing I’d been able to create a little more space for that getting-ready work. So here’s what we’re doing today: we’re taking a little space. I’m giving you a gift that most of us rarely give ourselves: fifteen minutes of silence, with some art supplies and the presence of God in our own hearts, as the prophet Jeremiah reminds us in today’s Old Testament lesson.
All around the room are different art stations. At any station you can pick up a card to decorate. You’ll work with just one card, and carry it around with you. You can draw a picture if you want, but the goal is to fill the card with color and texture. It doesn’t have to be a picture, it can just be shapes or squiggles or patterns or colors or whatever. Just keep going, keep adding, and see what happens.
Of course as we move around this room, which is not really all that big, we’ll interact with each other a little, standing close, passing things to each other. That’s fine. But don’t talk. Respect the quiet. Mostly stay with yourself and with what you’re doing. Let your art come out of your soul without telling yourself, This is ugly, or I can’t do this. Just be playful and enjoy it. When the time comes to an end – I’ll let you know – just leave your card at the table where you are and come back to your seat. Our art cards will become something beautiful together, just like us.