Lent 2024 | Day 5

By Janet Nygren
Day 5 (Monday, Feb 19)

As I enter prayer now, I pause to be still; to breathe slowly, to re-center my scattered senses upon the presence of God.1

Pause and pray.

“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.” (Philippians 3:10-11)

Think about it.

This is the verse on which we are basing our series this Lent. We would all wholeheartedly agree with Paul’s statement if we stopped halfway–”I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection.” But Paul is saying that it is as we become like Jesus in his death –suffering– that we truly get to know him. We don’t know how a resurrection moment will somehow follow, but the place where we have choice is to participate in suffering. This is what Paul Miller calls a “J-Curve.”2 We enter into a journey of suffering that curves downward as if we were sliding down from the tip of the J, but can expect that somehow it will result in a resurrection moment, curving upward to the top of the J. We will explore verses in Philippians throughout the week to see this pattern repeat itself in a variety of contexts.

Pause and pray.


Think about a specific time when you chose to suffer. It could be something small like letting someone get ahead of you in line, or something more significant like sacrificing your vacation for the sake of helping others, like a mission project. Can you think of a characteristic of Jesus that you experienced as a result (such as patience, kindness, compassion, etc.)? Would you be willing to pray for an opportunity to suffer for the sake of someone else today? If you do find an opportunity to suffer for the sake of someone else today (or this week), take a moment to share with Jesus how you related to him.


Jesus, help me to know you better.

“Suffering by itself is nothing. But suffering as a share in Christ’s Passion is a great gift.” (Mother Teresa)3

  1. Prayer used daily in Lectio365 found at https://www.24-7prayer.com/resource/lectio-365/
  2. Paul E. Miller, J-Curve (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2019), 19-20.
  3. Quoted in Miller, 70.


David Edelstein - February 19th, 2024 at 6:22am

Had to get up at 5 am this morning on my holiday day off to help my wife get to hospital for a procedure. She has been quite anxious about it.

Ruthie - February 19th, 2024 at 9:47am

Just reminded of this verse today: “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. “Romans 8:18 NIV. This is certainly something to hope for as we walk in the suffering of others.

Nick Tebordo - February 19th, 2024 at 11:07am

Praying for Rosemarie today! I know there have been times of suffering that have brought spiritual growth. We are also able to comfort others with the same comfort we have received in a time of our own suffering.




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