We find ourselves once again in the church season of Lent. The UCC Book of Worship defines Lent as “a penitential season of self-examination, prayer, and fasting that precedes the observance of the Triduum (Maundy Thursday evening, Good Friday, and the Vigil of Easter, which begins on Saturday night)” (Book of Worship, pp. 21-22). Lent is the season in which we reflect on the life, suffering, and death of Jesus, and what his giving of himself on the cross means for our lives. Some follow a Lenten devotional guide. Some participate in intentional prayer and study. Others give up something. In recent years it has become more popular to do something extra, like offer special service to someone or even give things away. This year I heard of yet another Lenten practice that follows this vein, which seems to be gaining momentum, at least on Facebook. That is, some folks are combining Lent with spring cleaning. The suggestion goes as follows: “Instead of giving up something for Lent this year, why not try the 40-day-40 items challenge? Each day of Lent, remove one item from your house which you don’t use or wear anymore and place it in a bag. At the end of Lent, donate these items to a charity shop or to a homeless shelter. They’ll be shared with those who really need them.” I rather like this idea. Sometime we just accumulate too much, and there is so much need in the world. I look forward to seeing you all on this first Sunday of Lent. The scripture will be Luke 4:1-13, and we will talk about growing stronger even during the wilderness times of our lives. See you in church!