Last year, I shared with you some suggestions for how to use my book – Jesus said, ‘I Am’ – for Lent reading. I know that individuals and groups, including groups of churches, did so, and I thought it would be good to share these resources again this year, with a few additions and amendments. I hope you find it helpful.
I’ve made a couple of tours round the garden this morning, checking the emerging plants after another weekend of major storms, and it astonishes me how well these fragile early plants have survived. The blackthorn blossom, in particular, tissue-paper thin, has withstood an absolute pounding. The birds are very busy on the feeders, and singing, and popping in and out of the thicker shrubs looking for nest sites. The days are stretching out now, and it feels good to be outside, for a little while at least!
Lent is on the way with the lengthening days, and some of you may be looking for some reading, or a spiritual practice, for this time. Many people seek to deepen their prayer, and commit to some physical discipline, and would like some company and support along the way. My book might be what you are looking for.
Each chapter begins with a short reading from John’s account of the life of Jesus, which is followed by some reflections, and then proceeds to offer suggestions for further study, and prayer, and creative response, as well as possible practical and community actions. You may be part of a small group or spiritual community, who might like to read it together. If you might follow it on your own, I intend to publish a little something every week on this blog so that we can take this walk together, and keep each other company here.
It might help you to see how it would work, so, below you’ll find a suggested calendar of how we could proceed – although of course it’s entirely up to you. Each week I’ll post some readings and suggestions for things to do here on this blog.
Getting Started: Chapter 1, Moses and Abraham. This is a shortish introductory chapter – you could fit it in this week, or as an extra piece of reading as Lent begins.
The woman at the well: week beginning Sunday 23rd February 2020. Ash Wednesday is 26th February this year.
I am the bread of life: week beginning 1st March.
I am the light of the world: week beginning 8th March.
I am the good shepherd, I am the gate for the sheep: week beginning 15th March.
I am the resurrection and the life: week beginning 22nd March.
I am the way, the truth and the life: week beginning 29th March.
I am the true vine: week beginning 5th April, Holy Week.
I am he: Maundy Thursday, 9th April, or another day this week.
It seems to fit well, I hope you agree.
If you want to find out a bit more about the book, there are extracts elsewhere on the blog, for instance here and here.
You can order the book from any bookshop, or online.
and all the usual places.
This could be good!