Monday, February 27, 2012

Monday - Lent 1: Family Altar

Oh how I love a project, and this first year of observing Lent means that there are many possibilities. Of course, the temptation is to get caught up in the newness and "project mentality," forgetting the reason for Lent. It's much easier to take on a project than to ask the Lord for a repentant heart. Who really wants to repent, right? Ah, my sinful flesh. 

It's precisely because I know my own tendencies that a family altar is a very good idea (albeit a project).  I tend to run with the emotions and energy levels of the moment. If I'm feeling good and energetic, then let's sing/pray Matins/Vespers, if not, well, let's just pretend we'll do it later. The idea of a family altar is a new one for me (as are most historic traditions of the Church), and I appreciate how it satisfies that need for grounding oneself physically. My head and heart are full of baby and husband and the "to do list" and on and on, and they need to be grounded. Stay still. Stay quiet. Rest. 

As we live in a small house, it's looking like a small bookcase in our living room is the only space that will work at this point. It will take some rearranging of books, a lamp and our family picture, and the addition of candles (check) and a crucifix or triptych (need). We'll slowly build up with icons and mantel. I'll update with pictures as we get there.

For the time being, I'll try to work toward making prayer and song and family worship habit. I hope that having a family altar will just facilitate that!

I'll end with the prayer of the day (from Treasury of Daily Prayer, First Monday in Lent, pg. 41):
"Lord Jesus, prepare us for that eternal Sabbath when You will rest in us,  just as now You work in us. The rest that we shall enjoy will be Yours, just as the work that we now do is Your work done through us. But You, O Lord, are eternally at work and eternally at rest. It is not time that You see or in time that You move or in time that You rest, yet You make what we see in time. You make time itself and the repose which comes when time ceases; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever." 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

1st Sunday in Lent - A Blessed Day

  • The look on K's face when Pastor made the sign of the cross on her forehead and told her, "The Lord God bless you and keep you in the faith which He poured out on you in the water and word of Holy Baptism through Jesus Christ."
  • The look on Pastor's face when she excitedly exclaimed, "Christ!"
  • Hearing that my sins are indeed forgiven.
  • My sweet husband recapping the gospel lesson for me later, since I was too distracted with K to remember (though I know it was a great sermon = law & gospel). 
  • Hubby playing with K (and her delighted giggles throughout) while I got a delicious soup and some gf brownies on the table. 
  • Hearing hubby and K singing vespers together as he put her down for the night.
It's tough. I LOVE having K in the Divine Service with us, but days like today make it difficult sometimes. She was so squirmy. Also, she was really into practicing her new vocabulary words and loudly imitating what she was seeing (i.e. holding up her little book and loudly singing "La, la, la!" after we're done singing and everyone is trying to listen to the scripture lesson). Very adorable, of course, but putting all my energy into containing her makes me totally exhausted. 

Thank You Lord, for a church where we don't have a nursery. Thank You for this opportunity to teach K how to sit and listen and love Your Word and Sacrament. Please forgive all my self-pity and give me strength and wisdom and joy in this godly task. Thank you for this sweet child who sings, "La, la, la!" to You with all her heart!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ash Wednesday

On My Heart Imprint Your Image

On my heart imprint Your image, Blessed Jesus, King of grace,
That life's richest cares and pleasures never may your work erase;
Let the clear inscription be, Jesus crucified for me,
Is my life, my hope's foundation, and my glory and salvation!

A New Day, A New Blog

My previous blogging adventures have been focused on home and baby. I think this one will include all that as well, but I really want to use it to record what I'm reading and learning: theological and literary.
Here goes! :)