Preparing for Easter

Preparing for Easter

As we prepare for Easter, what ways will you prepare your own heart this Lenten season? Photo courtesy of Wikipedia. Learn more about this image at

Spiritual Formation Center

Preparing for Easter

By Anne Arakaki-Lock, photo courtesy of Wikipedia

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain…”

-Revelation 21:4

I have been praying and looking for inspiration regarding my Lenten practice this year. My radar has been up as I listen for God to tell me what I should do during the 40-day period before Easter. How does He want me to prepare my heart? For my faith development, for me to grow closer to Him, it would involve discipline and being intentional. 

For the last few weeks, I have wondered why God kept bringing up the subject of pain to me so often? I have been wondering what the subject of pain has to do with Lent. I hear the word pain on my various Zoom meetings or whenever I’m talking to my friends or relatives. I read about pain in Scriptures during my routine devotions. Recently there have been visible signs brought to my attention — Reverend Karen’s arm wrap, Jill’s crutches, Steve’s foot brace. Yet very often the pain is invisible too, whether physical or emotional.

We have many, many prayer requests in our Small Group and in Coffee and Prayer with Rev. Karen for pain related issues. We know that behind each described pain, there is worry, frustration, and even costs. It can be temporary, or it can be chronic. But it’s all pain. It all hurts. 

So, what am I supposed to do with pain as I prepare for Easter? What can I do for Lent? Let me share what I have been inspired by God to do:

• I can step up my exercise routine. I can personally do something for my own pain that will remind me to think about Him.

• I can write up a prayer list and every morning pray for others in pain. I can also deliver a meal, share a bag of oranges, or run an errand for someone on the list. 

• I can spend time in the Word highlighting and journaling and creating a list of verses that show how God is the Mighty Physician, the Healer, so that I can readily disciple when called.

• I can get together with others in my Small Group and share pain, talk about our hurts, and encourage each other.

I can do more almsgiving to organizations like South King County Response Center, our sister church who works with our refugee, unhoused, hungry neighbors or King County Youth Chaplaincy who serves our incarcerated youth in pain.

I have a lot to do this Lenten season to prepare my heart for Easter. 

Anne Arakaki-Lock is a member of Congregational Care Ministries of Blaine Memorial UMC.

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