Daily Lenten Reflection

Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Romans 8:5-8, MSG

There’s no room to be smug. Who hasn’t been tempted by images that bubble in the unconscious places of our souls, just out of sight. We would be ashamed to voice them, if we could see them clearly. But because we don’t see them clearly, these imagined yearnings rule over us. In brief they are little kingdoms in our heads. These kingdoms in our heads are yoked to what ancient spiritual masters called the “appetites.” Do you want to see them? If yes, then, don’t feed them and see what happens! –Anthony Chvala-Smith, The Kingdoms in Our Heads


  • When you practice restraint, what “little kingdoms” show up in your head? When do you become aware of the “appetites” in your life?
  • What are you invited to become more conscious of this Lenten Season? What images, expectations, or “imagined yearnings” motivate your behavior that live “just out of sight?”
  • Prayerfully dwell in Romans 8:5-8 (MSG). What is God’s invitation to you in this text? How is Lent a time to be lead “into the open, into a spacious, free life?”

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