readings give a wonderful illustration of covenant. Through covenants, God communicates to us,
redeems us, and guarantees us eternal life.
A covenant is a promise and there are some 321 occurrences of covenant
within the Bible. There is a distinct
pattern to a covenant, emphasizing that this promise cannot and should not be
broken. We describe what we have done,
we list the obligations between the two (or more) parties, and we talk about
rewards and punishments for keeping or breaking our covenants.
I love the response
from Psalm 25 today: “Your ways, O Lord,
are love and truth to those who keep your covenant.” To be in covenant with God, others, and even
ourselves is an awesome opportunity and an even greater responsibility. And this covenant is underscored with
As we begin this
season of Lent, let’s think about the covenants in our lives. This is a perfect time for that reflection on
covenant, as we are preparing for the New Covenant between Christ and us. Perhaps we can incorporate this reflection on
our covenants into our daily prayer during Lent.
One way we can
reflect is to imagine our own covenants with God. How is my relationship with God? What have I done each day that welcomes God
into my life? Have I made any special
promises to God? Are those promises
contingent on me getting something in return?
What happens if I break my promise to God? Focus on the loving relationship you have
with God. Spend some time praying about
this and sitting quietly with this.
Another way we can reflect
is to pray about our covenants with others?
How are my relationships with others?
What have I done each day that welcomes “the other” into my life? How can I really take my faith, what I
believe, and make a promise to work for justice for “the other”? How can I walk in solidarity with people and
get to know people so that they become part of my loving and intrinsic self,
rather than even referring to them as “other”?
Focus on the loving relationship you have or want to have with people
you know and even people you don’t know.
Pray about the awesome opportunity to see the face of Christ in everyone
Finally, take time to
reflect and pray about your covenants with yourself. How am I taking care of myself – body, mind,
faith life, spirit? What have I done
each day that welcomes a loving relationship with myself? Have I made any special promises to myself or
do I negotiate with myself? What happens
if I break those promises? How can I
love myself more? Spend some time
praying about this and sitting quietly with this.
Lent promises for
each of us some great opportunities to reflect – take the time and the space
and promise yourselves that you will follow through!
Sue Chawszczewski is the Director of Campus