welcome to the hike!

Working out the call!

I currently living in Millersburg or as God whispered in me ear four years ago in PA, "the land of my Fathers!" MILLERS - burg! OK! The best way to describe my life of late, is simply "Pastor-at-Large" I live "outside the box" of our usual expectation of life, family, employment and even culture. I live, breathe, and weave around a four county area as a local missionary and have learned of so many supportive faith communities. I meet people who contact me where they are in their 'hike 'o life."

The hats I wear are that of Life Coach, Writer, Speaker, Retreat Facilitator, Pastoral Supply, Prayer Counselor and well, whatever God calls on me to do (I actually get paid to do all of these things, which is awesome, unless you are helping me with my books!) I also work to "tent-make my mission work" as a church secretary for a sweet fellowship pastored by one of my favorite seminary prof's.

So what do I want to be when I grow up? Stay tuned! The goals are big and staying solvent month by month is a huge victory, but as I see my own heart and others hearts change and grow in my daily walk, I realize, I am not working for treasures on earth....I have direct deposit above. Guess that's a pretty sweet ride! Lacing up my hiking boots...on the hike o' life!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014


To Lent or not to Lent: Will you join me?

This post is from three years ago - but as I went to Ash Wednesday service and spent time with friends asking me questions about that cross on my forehead - I decided that I am going to revisit these and update and write some new entries as I am inspired this year.  So if it sounds familiar you may have read this three years ago!
To Lent or not to Lent: Will you join me?
“Then he told them what they could expect for themselves: "Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You're not in the driver's seat—I am. Don't run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I'll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you? If any of you is embarrassed with me and the way I'm leading you, know that the Son of Man will be far more embarrassed with you when he arrives in all his splendor in company with the Father and the holy angels. This isn't, you realize, pie in the sky by and by. Some who have taken their stand right here are going to see it happen, see with their own eyes the kingdom of God." Luke 9: 23-27 The Message

As a shepherdess without a flock this year, I was trying to decide whether or not to practice Lent (some of the congregations that are considering me don’t all practice Lent per their tradition – more on that in a later post), I was challenged by a friend to post daily on facebook and help others draw nearer to Christ in this season.

So Karen thanks! I accept the challenge.

Lent is the Christian season of preparation before Easter. In Western Christianity, Ash Wednesday, (that is this today,  Wednesday, March 5, 2014) marks the first day, or the start of the season of Lent, which begins 40 days prior to Easter (Sundays are not included in the count as they are considered to be resurrections days and therefore we do not fast on the resurrection).

Lent is a time when many Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of fasting, repentance, moderation and spiritual discipline.

The purpose is to set aside time for reflection on Jesus Christ - his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial and resurrection.

 The Bible does not mention the custom of Lent, however, the practice of repentance and mourning in ashes (more on that of course on Ash Wednesday) is found in 2 Samuel 13:19; Esther 4:1; Job 2:8; Daniel 9:3; and Matthew 11:21.

Some of us have looked at Lent, as a legalistic way to “earn” our salvation through stringent practices, but the intent of those early church mothers and fathers was to help us focus on Christ.

In the modern era sometimes we think of the Lenten fast as a new year’s resolution redo, however to a committed follower of Christ we must REJECT THOSE THOUGHTS and allow CHRIST TO GUIDE US TO THE CROSS and have repentant sacrificial hearts and prepare us to be ready for the ALLELUIA’s of the EMPTY TOMB

is one common practice – to give something up and when you crave the forbidden luxury – turn to GOD.

is another common practice to commit to more time seeking and understanding the one who loves you most.

The last common practice of lent is ACTS OF KINDNESS
to think of others and show them God’s love in unselfish and sacrificial ways.

To fast from rich foods we seek the simplicity of daily bread, to fast from television and outside distractions we draw nearer to our Lord. To engage in acts of kindness and forgiveness is to understand more of God’s mercy and grace towards us.

So how can we begin our journey – On the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday we will use up or get rid of what we are denying our selves – for the obedient church goers in the middle ages – they used up all the fat, eggs and meat in their home with one last feast before their fast.
This idea has turned into Shrove Tuesday or Carnival or Mardi gras, depending on where you are geographically.

 So today you and I need to decide what our Lenten practice will be. This web site has some great ideas for all who love Jesus; you can tell of course it is written with some specific ideas for those who practice the Roman Catholic tradition. The site is


I intend to either post a helpful thought or blog each day and am still praying about what my fast should be.  

 I will, in accountability, keep you posted! But to close today here is a prayer for each of us as we prepare to walk more closely with Christ to more fully understand all HE willingly took on for us…

A Lenten Reflection (author unknown)
Give up complaining——focus on gratitude.
Give up pessimism——become an optimist.
Give up harsh judgments——think kindly thoughts.
Give up worry——trust Divine Providence.
Give up discouragement——be full of hope.
Give up bitterness——turn to forgiveness.
Give up hatred——return good for evil.
Give up negativism——be positive.
Give up anger——be more patient.
Give up pettiness——become mature.
Give up gloom——enjoy the beauty that is all around you.
Give up jealousy——pray for trust.
Give up gossiping——control your tongue.
Give up sin——turn to virtue.
Give up giving up——hang in there!

Praying for each of us – JOY regardless of our struggles or sufferings that we endure as we prepare our hearts for the fullness of the RESURRECTION in the Hike ‘o our earthly life…..

1 comment:

samwise said...

thanks darcy! i texted our students tonite about our service and several responded..."what's lent?". i've shared your post. Lent helps us. Ashes remind us. Jesus saves us.