Art of Lent – Preparation

This Lent I am using Sister Wendy Beckett’s ‘The Art of Lent’ as my daily devotional. Each day offers a work of art and a short thought. Each Sunday I will share what has struck me most during the week.

***I originally managed to create this as a page rather than a blog entry, hence it being reposted on the blog a week late***


These first few days having really been about preparation, with a weekly theme beginning on each Sunday of Lent. The first theme is silence, but we will get to that next Sunday, at the end of the week.

The reflection that struck me most came right at the start, on Ash Wednesday, accompanying Katsushika Hokusai’s painting ‘The Great Wave’.


Sister Wendy spoke of the wave as an image of the unpredictability and uncontrollability of life. “Risk is a human constant; it has to be accepted – and laid aside. What we can do, we do. Beyond that, we endure, our endurance framed by a sense of what matters most.”

It sounds fatalistic, but it is also liberating. We can only do as much as we can, so there is no point in worrying about what we can’t. Preparation can be as much about acceptance as action. If we cannot ride the wave, we must simply hold our breath and wait for it to pass.

Published by leighannegreenwood

Baptist minister in training with Revive Leeds. Blogging on behalf of Revive and (coming soon) for myself at Covenant Project.

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