We interrupt this regularly-scheduled Worship Wednesday to focus on a book that is a form of worship and perfect for your devotional readings during the Lenten season…Worship Wednesday will return next week!


So today is officially Ash Wednesday and if you’re like me, Lent can leave you feeling a bit befuddled.

I’m not Catholic so the idea of “giving something up” was foreign to me until not so long ago when I realized it wasn’t just those who counted themselves as Catholic that gave stuff up for Lent. Oh.

In the past few years, I’ve used this period to pick-up a positive habit rather than focus on giving something meaningful up because you know, I don’t like discomfort.

And yes, that’s kind of the point. I get that.

So when I read the lovely words written by Kris Camealy in her new eBook Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement I was convicted not out of guilt but out of desire to walk that much closer to God.

Through her down-to-earth language and humble disposition, Kris takes us through four phases that will break-down some walls we’ve erected between ourselves and Jesus. She begins with Self-Examination (Holey – because we all have holes), moves on to Confession followed by Repentance (Wholly – because we are again made whole) and ends with Atonement (Holy).

I sat down a few nights ago to read it and found myself pretty much highlighting the entire book. Here are a few of my favorites:

Easter Sunday may occur once a calendar year, but it is experienced countlesstimes in the Christian’s life, as we repeatedly rejoice in the gift of our salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus. By His good and generous mercy, we can endure hundreds of lents in this life, as we remember these words found in Isaiah 48:10, 11:

See I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. For my own sake, for my own sake I do this…..I will not yield my glory to another.

This is the hard refinement, the journey from holey (broken in sin) to wholly (surrendered) to holy.

The trials you endure, they are undeniably part of your story—but your life is not just about you—your life is about Christ in you—about the work He can do through you, when you yield to His will. (Come and Die)

And how about these words?

Restoration is a process. It’s not that He doesn’t miraculously heal, certainly there’s plenty of testimony to this kind of miraculous, instant healing. But for most of us, soul healing comes slowly—painfully.

You’ll know it when He’s calling you toward His refining fire. The smooth surface you’ve long stretched over, covering the cracks underneath, begins to ripple from the heat. Memories surface, old wounds begin to weep—the cracks widen and hurts spill.

This is not a time to turn and run, though that may be our instinct. This is the time to stand still, to listen to what He’s whispering, and to allow Him to strip you of the covers you’ve been hiding under. Trust me when I say you’ve not got anything He hasn’t seen before. Stand in this fire, let Him purify you—this is how He loves us. This is the process of sanctification. (Coming Down) 

And lastly…

Lent sometimes comes wrapped in filthy paper with tattered ribbons, sin bound so tight —barbed-wire piercing holes into a heart in need of a good bleed. We must wrestle out the ugly that has for years made a home in the dark festering places.

Reading the words over the Seder meal, “yeast leavens or puffs up, as pride and sin inflates our hearts…” Pride prevents the confession. Pride pushes back grace from whitewashing the muddied up walls we crudely erect within our hearts. I read Luke 14:11, and I wail: “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

It doesn’t matter that Lent lasts just 40 days. The refining process runs life-long. God knows no timetable except that which He sets by His own hand. He will press us until we come clean. He woos us through flame, with passion and persistence.

The grace of it is that, through the scalding, we become renewed. The Father grafts new skin to cover old wounds, and in time we gain wisdom and strength. We become healthier, holier, a little bit more like Christ, and less like us. That is our highest calling. I’ll live in the fires of refinement, if that’s what it takes. Wash me clean. (Coming Clean)

Holey, Wholly, Holy is available in PDF format as well as for your Kindle. For those who prefer to hold an actual copy, there’s an option for you, too.

The PDF version is free for those who subscribe to Kris’ newsletter or 1)Purchase your paperback copy here or 2)Your Kindle copy here.

Download/order your copy today – it’s fabulous. Like really, really fabulous. 




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