Week One: Leader Toolkit

Theme: Practicing Emptying

Being emptied in Lent makes room for different kinds of full. Feeling empty reminds us to not stuff ourselves with the distractions that never really satisfy. Embracing emptiness helps us see that we are already full of the Divine.

Scripture Text | Luke 4:1-13; Wilderness

Three Wonderings

1

What are the things that tempt me that aren’t healthy, physically and spiritually?

2

How can I ask for help to overcome some of these temptations?

3

What are some healthy things or habits I can use to fill me when I “empty” myself of the unhealthy things?

Children’s Picture Books

Meditation Practice

Join Rev. Emily Meyer, Director of The Ministry Lab, as she invites you to wonder and reflect in the audio recording below.

Transcript available here.

Creative Project

Blackout Poetry

Discover the creativity that emerges from absence, or taking away, as you look closely for words that inspire you as you create original poems.

How to:

  1. Take a newspaper, magazine, or print something from your computer.
  2. With a pen or marker, just begin selecting or crossing off words.
  3. The idea is to let a poem emerge, without thinking too hard, and to black out much of the text so the words really pop off the page.
  4. For inspiration, visit the embedded video from Austin Kleon.

Caring for the Common Good

Filling Up with Kindness

Researchers are clear on the critical importance of “filling” our children with messages of kindness, caring and their responsibility to the common good.  If we do not do so intentionally, kids are left open to the drumbeat of societal messages exalting self centeredness and consumerism. One powerful way to share these big-hearted values is by weaving them into your daily routines. Offer this printable resource to the families in your congregation. Encourage them to print it and hang it in a prominent spot in their homes to remind them how easy – and important — it is to put a focus on compassion, empathy and gratitude each day.

Additional Resources

Download this resource from Rev. Emily Meyer, Director of The Ministry Lab, full of additional reflections and questions for Leaders.

© Minnesota Conference United Church of Christ | 2021