Family Lenten Devotionals 2024
Essentials for the Journey
Week 1 of Lent – Compass: Finding Direction 

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” 

Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

—John 14:1-7 

Written by Cayanna Herrera, Director of Children’s Ministry

As a child, my family lived far from our extended relatives. When we wanted to see these family members, we had to take a long trip. One of my favorite parts of these long road trips didn’t actually happen on our journey, but rather before we ever put our suitcases in the car.  

My favorite part of vacation was the planning. My father would pull out his old road atlas and we would search for the perfect route to take, the best sights to see, and the order in which we would see our extended family. See, we lived in Wisconsin and most of our extended family lived in Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado and since the distance was so great, we always tried to see as many people and places as possible in the two weeks of vacation my parents were able to take from work. It was very important to have the right route planned and to know where we were planning to be each day so that we could make the most of our trip.  

Our Lenten journey is a bit like that. If we don’t know where we are going, we might miss out on some of the wonderful blessings that God has for us in these special weeks leading up to Easter! In our Scripture reading this week, Jesus tells his disciples that he is the way- he is like our map or our compass! If we focus our journey on Jesus and getting to know him better, we will be ready for the incredible Mystery of Easter ahead. Let’s be sure to take time during this Lenten season to focus on the story of Jesus as our compass, our map, pointing us to God’s incredible love and the Mystery of the Resurrection.  

Family Activity
As a family, choose a place you would love to visit together. What would you like to see there? What would you need to take with you on your trip? What would be your Essentials for the Journey? I wonder if those essentials could also be essential to our Lenten journey…