From Martin, for the church newsletter this week.
Easter may seem far distant today, but in my experience it often turns up before I've really noticed. Palm Sunday gives me some warning, but life is busy and before I realise it's Good Friday.Many Christian traditions practise a season of preparation for Easter, known as Lent. The word Lent means many things to many people, but as a Baptist with no Lenten tradition I have quietly picked up two ideas that give my heart time to feel the vibe.My first goal is a daily reading plan following Jesus as he walks towards the cross. The internet (or your Bible app) offers many plans for the Western Lenten timeframe - 40 days, skipping Sundays. Those will start this Wednesday, if you wanted to choose one yourself. Palm Sunday is another good time to start, reading day by day.I also try to go without some small nice thing that I would have every day or so. This jars my memory and points my mind to Jesus stepping away from the glory of heaven. It also makes me a little sad, and I try to remember that "God is Enough" for me. On Sundays I enjoy the small treat and remember with joy that on Easter morning Jesus conquered death.(Pro tip - Don't pick something morally bad to give up. You can hardly celebrate Sunday by being rude to the neighbours, can you? The best day to give up sinning is Today, certainly, but don't mix up your purposes.)My success rate has been variable, and last year the calendar again surprised me. I will be trying again, and maybe you'd like to join me.