Focal verse

“Come and see a man who told me everything I have ever done! He cannot be the Messiah, can he?” (John 4:29).

Reflection

“Mama, come look!” I can’t count the number of times my children call me to witness whatever it is they are creating. Sometimes it’s their latest drawing, sometimes it’s their Lego creation, sometimes it’s their tower of blocks. “Mama, come look!” They call me to see their favorite picture in a book, a dump truck driving down the street or friends playing outside. Their words are an invitation to see and learn along with them.

As a parent, I want to invite my children to see the beauty of God’s story and how Jesus’ life, death and resurrection merit telling others to “Come look.”

The season of Lent, which begins with Ash Wednesday, provides an opportunity for families to see Jesus’ life. It’s a life marked by compassion for others, service to neighbors, prayers for our enemies and love of God. Over and over again through Scripture, we have the chance to tell our children, “Come look!”

Throughout the 40 days of Lent, families can find themselves overwhelmed by opportunities for spiritual growth. Churches add services on weekdays and encourage practices such as fasting, taking on a new spiritual discipline or cultivating kindness and acts of service. If we let ourselves get carried away by all these things, we can forget that Lent is about drawing ourselves and our families closer to Jesus.

This Lent, I’m committing to the practice of seeing Jesus and inviting my children to “come look.”

“Come look!” I can say as we walk past budding trees and sprouting bulbs; look at God’s creation and new life.

“Come look!” I can say as I read a Bible story, inviting my family to learn about Jesus’ life.

“Come look!” I can say when we’re shopping and I pick up extra food to share with neighbors who are hungry.

“Come look!” I can say when we pray together as a family.

This Lent, take time to see the gifts before you—your community, your family, your work—and look for Jesus. Invite others to “come look” and experience the love and grace he offers to the world.

Practices

Find an illustrated Bible (such as the Spark Story Bible) and pick one of the illustrations to talk about as a family. Look at the image and share with one another what you see and what you learn about God.

Take time to unplug. Gather as a family to look one another in the eyes and see each other as God’s beloved.

Prayers

We pray to see glimpses of God’s grace in our lives.

We pray for signs of healing and hope for those sick and hurting.

We pray for courage to share Jesus’ love with others.

We give thanks for signs of spring beginning to pop up.

We give thanks for our children’s invitations to come and see.

We give thanks for artists and all who create.

Service opportunity 

Is there an area in your church or community that could use some spring cleaning? Gather with friends and spruce up the church vestibule to make it more comfortable and welcoming. Pick up trash around your neighborhood or find a spot where you can make a green space.

Kimberly Knowle-Zeller
Kimberly Knowle-Zeller is an ordained ELCA pastor, mother of two and spouse of an ELCA pastor. She lives with her family in Cole Camp, Mo. Her website is kimberlyknowlezeller.com.

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