"Lay something down to take something up."
This was described as the "invitation of Lent" in a recent church bulletin. Beautifully phrased. And it made me realize that I do a fair job of laying something down most years for Lent, but I rarely take something up.
The sermon was about Mary and Martha in Luke, chapter 10. If you don't know the story, Jesus is visiting the family of Mary and Martha. Martha is working her tail off, trying to have everything just right and her sister, Mary, is just sitting around listening to Jesus. Finally Martha gets fed up and asks Jesus if he is going to do something about her slacker-sister. Jesus tells Martha that Mary has made the right choice, to sit at his feet and listen and learn.
I am totally a Martha - "distracted by many tasks." There are always things I am working on and even more things that need to be done.
The sermon made me wish it was early February instead of early March. If Lent hadn't started, I think I would have approached the season differently based on the images in this sermon. I would have looked at ways to make the Mary choice, to spend time with Jesus instead of being busy and distracted with many other things.
Thankfully, it is never too late. Jesus is always available, waiting to spend time with us.