Last year, our publisher/editor, Verity Jones, asked several of us if we would be willing to contribute to a Lenten devotional from Christian Board of Publication. 

I’d never written for a devotional booklet before, but I thought, “How hard can it be?” The lessons are short!”

Well, for someone used to writing 700-word articles, 6-page sermons, and 20 page seminary papers, it wasn’t easy at all.  We were each given a list of 28 scripture texts for an assigned week (mine is Week 2) and were allowed to choose one text from a list of four (Old Testament, Psalm, Epistle, Gospel lesson) for each day.  I looked up all the scriptures on my list, made notes, carried them around with me for most of last August, and would take them out and look at them a couple of times a day. It took awhile to choose. There are so many great Lenten texts, but then I’d think, what can I say in 250 words that hasn’t already been said?

Gradually, I settled on the texts, and the messages emerged, one by one. What was really interesting, though, was reading the devotions from the other writers on the project — Verity, Ted Parks, Sherri Emmons, Christian Piatt, and Bob Friedly — and seeing how it all came together.

The devotional, “Fellowship of Prayer 2008: Devotions for Lent” is available now through CBP.