Ready, Set, Lent!

Are you ready for Lent? This week, I thought it might be helpful to look at the 3 aspects of Lent, read some Scripture on each of them, and ask ourselves how God might be calling us to grow closer to him through them this Lenten season.

Snippet from the Show

The light of Christ shines in the darkest places.


Shownotes

The Importance of Prison Ministry 

  •  Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them; and those who are ill-treated, since you also are in the body” (Hebrews 13:3)
  • “I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me” (Matthew 25:35)
  • And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.’ ” (Matthew 25:40)

Interested in getting involved in prison ministry? Make sure you don’t go into prison ministry alone. Partner with an existing ministry or organization that can guide and prepare you. Check out Kolbe Prison Ministries!

Finding a Priority in the Spiritual Life 

The enemy can easily distract us in our spiritual lives by overwhelming us with a long list of action items. The best way to avoid this temptation is to focus on one goal at a time. What is one thing in your spiritual life that you can grow in?

“Our time doesn’t belong to us, it belongs to God.”


Shownotes

The Importance of Prison Ministry 

  •  Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them; and those who are ill-treated, since you also are in the body” (Hebrews 13:3)
  • “I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me” (Matthew 25:35)
  • And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.’ ” (Matthew 25:40)

Interested in getting involved in prison ministry? Make sure you don’t go into prison ministry alone. Partner with an existing ministry or organization that can guide and prepare you. Check out Kolbe Prison Ministries!

Finding a Priority in the Spiritual Life 

The enemy can easily distract us in our spiritual lives by overwhelming us with a long list of action items. The best way to avoid this temptation is to focus on one goal at a time. What is one thing in your spiritual life that you can grow in?

Prayer

Here, we look at the passage from the first chapter of Mark:

“And in the morning, a great while before day, he rose and went out to a lonely place, and there he prayed.”

Mark 1:35

Jesus’ example challenges us: How much time do we set aside to pray each day? How much time could we set aside if we focused on it a bit more and were deliberate about it? In what ways might we use busyness and distraction as an excuse for not praying more? Where can we set aside more time to pray this Lent?

Fasting

Here is what Jesus says about fasting:

“When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites. They neglect their appearance, so that they may appear to others to be fasting. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you may not appear to others to be fasting, except to your Father who is hidden. And your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you.”

Matthew 6:16-18

As we prepare for Lent, let’s ask ourselves: What do I tend to turn to for comfort instead of God? What things and pleasures in my life do I put in God’s place? Do I look to food, drink, social media, shopping, or human relationships when I should turn to God instead?

Almsgiving

Jesus teaches us about almsgiving through this story:

“When he looked up he saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and he noticed a poor widow putting in two small coins. He said, “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.”

Luke 21:1-4

Let’s ask ourselves: How and why do we give? Do we give just a little from our excess so that we never even feel it? Do we give, but expect praise and thanks for it?

In what do we place our trust, if not God? In our jobs, our bank accounts, our own skills and accomplishments? Jesus challenges us to give all, as the widow did in this story.

Some links I share for further prayer and reflection:

Litany of Trust

Litany of Humility

Girlfriends episode: What Are You Keeping From God?

At the end of today’s show, I share my response to a question from Megan who wonders about how to manage working in a place that does not share her values.

In this show, I also share about The Word, the upcoming Catholic Bible Summit.

It’s free to register and you will get access to dozens of talks on Scripture from exceptional catholic speakers. My talk will be about family prayer time and ways to make it happen in your home and family. Please join us!

My newest book is one that I wrote with Dan, the Manual for Marriage, a beautiful resource for every couple. In it, Dan and I share reflective essays on marriage and family life, but it also features a large collection of prayers, Scripture passages, hymns, and stories from the saints that will encourage and support you in your married relationship.  

I have received so much feedback from all of you about my newest book and the first chapter that I shared with you at the end of episode 210Giving Thanks and Letting Go: Reflections on the Gift of Motherhood is a book in which I share from my heart about the very real changes, challenges, triumphs, and joys of being a mom in an “emptying nest.” You can read that sample chapter at Ave Maria Press. (Use the coupon code BEAN20 to get 20% off your order!)

My book, You Are Enough: What Women of the Bible Teach You About Your Mission and Worth, is available for order! Use the code, GIRLFRIENDS to receive ten percent off your order. Don’t miss out on this special available exclusively to listeners of the Girlfriends podcast. 

Have feedback or an idea to share? I would love to hear from you!

ANNOUNCEMENTS

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Check out the Catholic Momcast featuring Lisa Hendey and me, available on iTunes!

RETREAT

The You’re Worth It! Retreat for Women

Find out more about bringing this unique event for women to your parish, group, or community. Read more and request more information here.

Or find out more about having me come speak at your parish or conference.

Contact:

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Megan Madden

Megan Madden is a homeschooling mother with a passion for writing and speaking on authentic femininity and virtuous womanhood. In 2017, she began graduate studies in marriage and family at the International Theological Institute in Austria. After moving to Kraków, Poland to work with university students, Megan more personally continued her research on the complementarity of man and woman, particularly on the question of what it means to be a woman. She delved into the study of renowned Catholic writers on women such as St. Edith Stein, Gertrude von le Fort, Alice von Hildebrand, St. John Paul II, and St. Teresa of Avila.

The results were the development of Megan’s online ministry A Mother’s Lace, as well as speaking opportunities and her book with Ascension: Mary, Teach Me to Be Your Daughter.

Megan lives outside of Oxford, England with her husband, who is a lecturer in theology, and their five children.

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