Lent Reflection Sunday, March 8


The decree of the LORD is trustworthy,
giving wisdom to the simple.

Psalm 19:8

The wrinkles on my grandmother’s face were beautiful. When “Mema” laughed, all the lines on her face curved upward, like a hundred smiles. Now that I’m getting on in years, I often think of Mema. Her wrinkles chronicled the wisdom that she had gained from life.

In her younger years, she lost the family farm, her home, my grandfather’s income, and her young son in World War II. But she never lost her faith. Though life was hard, God made her strong on the inside. In her older years, our entire family sought her wise counsel. She was the most joyful person we knew.

Today, we live in a youth-oriented culture. Drug store shelves are lined with anti-aging creams. Commercials tells us that cosmetics will reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Botox treatments are just a phone-call away.

But perhaps we should wear our wrinkles like smiles. Like ribbons of grace, our wisdom glitters in every line and furrow.

That’s worth celebrating.

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Nancy Jo Sullivan

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Nancy Jo Sullivan is an inspirational author and speaker. She has published with Random House, Guideposts, Readers Digest, and the Huffington Post. Her newest book, Small Mercies, was recently released by Loyola Press. In the book, she writes about God’s presence in motherhood, family, and love. Through poignant reflections, she recalls how she found God even in her darkest moments, especially in the months that followed the death of her daughter with Down’s syndrome. She reminds the reader that God is present in “every mess, burden, and blessing.” The mother of two grown daughters, Nancy Jo resides in Saint Paul, Minnesota. She loves hanging out with her daughters, teaching writing classes to kids with special needs, jogging, making spinach smoothies, and of course, writing about her imperfect life.

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