My family recently went to see a local version of the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar. In this Broadway-adapted stage show, the last week of Jesus’ life is relived but with some “modern” (if you call 1971 modern, that is) interpretations and language.
As we were leaving, we heard someone comment that the show was really more about Judas. It wasn’t until then I realized this was true. To someone who knew nothing about Jesus, the show would not have particularly helped shape their view of God’s son. There was not much reflection on the parts of his ministry other than the events of his last week. Instead, the focus was on the struggle of faith and belief. Judas was unhappy about how Jesus was getting his message out.
With all of the pieces of Jesus’ life and ministry that were not portrayed in this loose interpretation of the gospel, though, it was amazing to me that a major scene took place in the Garden of Gethsamene; that time following the last supper and before the arrest when Jesus prayed. He talks with God. He calls out to God. He renews his relationship with God. What a reminder about the value and importance of prayer life.
The season of Lent, the forty days before Easter, begins this Wednesday. Many Christians around the world will give something up during this season. I encourage you, instead, to add something. Add more intentional prayer in your days.
During Lent, spend time reflecting on what the life and death of Christ means to us as Christians; what it means for you.
Take time to find your own “garden”; a place that is just for you and God to be in conversation.
And while you are there, consider these ideas:
Use a news magazine or newspaper to find people or situations in need of prayer or use the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Mission Yearbook for Prayer and Study through podcast, email, RSS, Facebook, or the written word.
Read, reflect and pray using the devotions at d365, Journey to the Cross.
Read Mark 1:35, Matthew 6:9-15, Luke 11:2-4