Welcome to the first full week of Lent. How is it going so far? Hopefully, you have found some time to ponder what might need to be set aside or traded in in order to gain a new perspective on your relationship with Jesus.
This week, as part of your Lenten 'prayer, fasting, and almsgiving', I would like to challenge you to sit somewhere new the next time you go to church. It is easy for our habits to become so ingrained that we no longer think about what we are doing. Which pew you chose affects so much of how you worship God. Whether you are a "sit in the front-er" or a "back-bench latecomer", our view from the peanut gallery colors our view of the Mass or Service and the people with whom we worship.
Do we arrive late and distracted with one foot in the pew and the other in the parking lot? Or do we arrive super early and sit in the front pew trying not to be distracted by our fellow worshipers?
Where do you sit in the pew? If you have small children or responsibilities as an Extraordinary Minister, you have to sit on the end. But, sometimes, the edge is a comfortable space for the "just in case" emergency like a coughing fit. Sitting on the edge may make us feel a little more in control of our surroundings.
What if, this week, you moved to the middle without being asked, leaving space for someone on your left and someone on your right to join you in your prayer and praise of God?
Sitting someplace new will change the way the Mass or service looks and feels. This is ultimately the purpose of Lent: adjusting our posture so that we turn our eyes and our hearts back to God. Trying a new seat might shake you up a little bit and cause you to notice something new. It will give you the opportunity to sit with different folks and possibly meet someone new.
It might also scratch away at some of our "world-weariness" and allow us to appreciate, more fully, our time of worship.
Take some time this week to ponder how a new point of view will affect how you approach God in worship.