Lent prayer and reflection guide
These Bible readings, thoughts and prayers are for every day of Lent, and give you the opportunity to reflect and spend time with God in preparation for Easter.
These daily Lent reflections are designed to prepare us for Easter, and to remember the great love that Jesus has for each of us.
These short daily reflections provide an opportunity to connect with God each day and draw closer to Jesus in the lead up to Easter Sunday, where we celebrate our risen Saviour.
Lent is a season of pausing each day to surrender our hearts to God and spend time with Him. We hope that you will be blessed as you read and reflect each day on the truth that our lives should be built on nothing less than the cross of Christ.
All scriptures come from the New International Version – UK (NIVUK).
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Bible Verse: Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill. Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming. It is close at hand – Joel 2:1
Thought: Lent is about remembering Jesus’ coming and His sacrifice for us. This Lenten season, take time to reflect and give thanks to God for Jesus.
Prayer: Lord, help me to remember that You came into the world for me. Use this season to draw me closer to You. Help me to want nothing less than You.
Bible verse: Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children… Joel 2:15-16b
Thought: During Lent, many people take the time to dedicate themselves more fully to God—both alone and in community. This week, look for ways to spend time with others, praising God and encouraging each other.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, You are the Lord of all humanity. Help me to join with other believers in worshipping You, as You deserve. Help me to express Your love and care to those around me.
Bible verse: Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for people to humble themselves? Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed and for lying in sackcloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord? Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter – when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. Isaiah 58:5-8
Thought: Sometimes, we think that following God is just about going to church. But it’s much more than that. God calls us to serve people in His name.
Prayer: God, use me personally as Your instrument to show Your love to the world. Help me to help others. And bless Wesley Mission as together we try to do this.
Bible verse: For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge. Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb; you taught me wisdom in that secret place. Cleanse me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Psalm 51:3-9
Thought: Sinfulness is the greatest problem in the world, and it’s a problem we all need help with. Thankfully, God’s forgiveness and grace is on offer to everyone.
Prayer: Lord, I am so sorry for my mistakes. I am sorry for ignoring You. Please forgive me, and cover me in Your grace. Thank You. I want to live with You.
First Sunday in Lent
Bible verse: ‘Be careful not to practise your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honoured by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Matthew 6:1-6
Thought: As humans, we naturally crave the approval and praise of others. But such praise is meaningless when compared to what God offers—the riches of eternal life.
Prayer: God, help me to crave Your approval, not the approval of those around me. I want to live for Your glory, not my own.
Bible verse: When you have entered the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance and have taken possession of it and settled in it, take some of the firstfruits of all that you produce from the soil of the land that the Lord your God is giving you and put them in a basket. Then go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his Name and say to the priest in office at the time, ‘I declare today to the Lord your God that I have come to the land the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.’ The priest shall take the basket from your hands and set it down in front of the altar of the Lord your God. Then you shall declare before the Lord your God: ‘My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down into Egypt with a few people and lived there and became a great nation, powerful and numerous. But the Egyptians ill-treated us and made us suffer, subjecting us to harsh labour. Then we cried out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our voice and saw our misery, toil and oppression. So the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders. He brought us to this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey; and now I bring the firstfruits of the soil that you, Lord, have given me.’ Place the basket before the Lord your God and bow down before him. Then you and the Levites and the foreigners residing among you shall rejoice in all the good things the Lord your God has given to you and your household. Deuteronomy 26:1-11
Thought: God has done so much for us, but we often forget this in our busy lives. Lent is the perfect time to stop and thank God for His goodness.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for all that You have done for me—from the smallest blessings to the greatest gift of Your Son Jesus.
Bible verse: Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’ Psalm 91:1-2
Thought: Life can be full of scary moments and situations. But God is a refuge and fortress for His people, and He will protect and care for you.
Prayer: Lord, when I am afraid, help me to look to You for protection and comfort. Cover me in Your almighty strength and love.
Bible verse: If you say, ‘The Lord is my refuge,’ and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent. ‘Because he loves me,’ says the Lord, ‘I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honour him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.’ Psalm 91:9-16
Thought: Do you ever feel alone? You don’t need to feel that way, because God promises to always be there for you, whatever you are facing.
Prayer: God, I want You to be my refuge. Guard me, protect me, deliver me. Show me Your salvation as You carry me through life.
Bible verse: …the message concerning faith that we proclaim: if you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, ‘Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.’ For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile – the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ Romans 10:8b-13
Thought: Much of life is uncertain. What does the future hold? But there is one thing we can be certain of—if we believe in Jesus, we are saved.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank You for coming to die for me, so that I can be absolutely certain that I am saved. Your grace is amazing.
Bible verse: Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. The devil said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.’ Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Man shall not live on bread alone.”’ The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, ‘I will give you all their authority and splendour; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.’ Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.”’ The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the Son of God,’ he said, ‘throw yourself down from here. For it is written: ‘“He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”’ Jesus answered, ‘It is said: “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”’ When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time. Luke 4:1-13
Thought: During Lent, we remember the 40 days Jesus spent being tempted in the desert. When you face temptation, remember that Jesus knows what you are going through.
Prayer: God, thank You that Jesus understands my temptation. Help me to persevere and remain faithful, relying on Your strength.
Bible verse: After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: ‘Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.’ But Abram said, ‘Sovereign Lord, what can you give me since I remain childless and the one who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?’ And Abram said, ‘You have given me no children; so a servant in my household will be my heir.’ Then the word of the Lord came to him: ‘This man will not be your heir, but a son who is your own flesh and blood will be your heir.’ He took him outside and said, ‘Look up at the sky and count the stars – if indeed you can count them.’ Then he said to him, ‘So shall your offspring be.’ Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness. He also said to him, ‘I am the Lord, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it.’ But Abram said, ‘Sovereign Lord, how can I know that I shall gain possession of it?’ So the Lord said to him, ‘Bring me a heifer, a goat and a ram, each three years old, along with a dove and a young pigeon.’ Abram brought all these to him, cut them in two and arranged the halves opposite each other; the birds, however, he did not cut in half. Then birds of prey came down on the carcasses, but Abram drove them away. As the sun was setting, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and a thick and dreadful darkness came over him. Genesis 15:1-12
Thought: God is faithful, and always keeps His promises. We see this in the story of Abraham, whose wife bore a son just as God promised—despite her old age.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I praise You that just as You kept your promise to give Abraham a son, You will keep Your promise to bring me home to heaven.
Second Sunday in Lent
Bible verse: The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident. One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord. Hear my voice when I call, Lord; be merciful to me and answer me. My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face.’ Your face, Lord, I will seek. Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, God my Saviour. Psalm 27
Thought: If evil people seek to harm you—or even threaten your life—you need not fear. God is in control. He is stronger than all earthly forces.
Bible verse: Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. Teach me your way, Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors. Do not hand me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, spouting malicious accusations. I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. Genesis 15:17-18
Thought: Sometimes our earthly relationships are not as loving as we would like. If you face this, remember your Heavenly Father and brothers and sisters in Christ.
Prayer: God, some people will reject me for caring about You. Help me to remain strong, no matter what they think.
Bible verse: Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends. Philippians 3:17 - 4:1
Thought: Jesus offers new life and new hope to those who trust in Him. And He promises to accept all those who seek forgiveness. What a great promise.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I thank You for offering me new life through Your son. Your promise is wonderful and Your grace is life-saving.
Bible verse: At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, ‘Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.’ He replied, ‘Go and tell that fox, “I will keep on driving out demons and healing people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal. In any case, I must press on today and tomorrow and the next day – for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem. Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Luke 13:31-35
Thought: Even when Jesus was threatened, He kept proclaiming His message. It’s a great lesson for us as we seek to follow Jesus.
Prayer: God, give me courage to keep following Jesus no matter the risks, and equip organisations like Wesley Mission to share Your love boldly.
Bible verse: Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labour on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare. Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David. See, I have made him a witness to the peoples, a ruler and commander of the peoples. Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations you do not know will come running to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has endowed you with splendour.’ Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts. Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the Lord. ‘As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:1-9
Thought: Many of us believe that we would be happier if we earned more money. But you cannot purchase what truly matters in life – God’s love is freely available.
Prayer: Lord, keep me from being distracted by the things of this world. Help me focus on the riches on offer to me in Jesus Christ.
Bible verse: You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands. I will be satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you. On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. I cling to you; your right hand upholds me. Psalm 63:1-8
Thought: Have you ever been extremely thirsty, or extremely hungry? This Psalmist says that God is like a fresh drink, or rich food – He satisfies our needs and desires.
Prayer: Lord God, I know You are the only One who truly satisfies. Help me to look to You for satisfaction, and not to other worldly things.
Bible verse: For I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea. They were all baptised into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. Now these things occurred as examples to keep us from setting our hearts on evil things as they did. Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written: ‘The people sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry.’ We should not commit sexual immorality, as some of them did – and in one day twenty-three thousand of them died. We should not test Christ, as some of them did – and were killed by snakes. And do not grumble, as some of them did – and were killed by the destroying angel. These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come. So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall. No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:1-13
Thought: Even someone who has been following Jesus for decades must remain wary of the temptations of sin. How are you fighting sin in your life?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I know sin hurts You, and I don’t want to make You grieve. Please help me to live a life that honours all You have done for me.
Third Sunday in Lent
Bible verse: Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. Jesus answered, ‘Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no. But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them – do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no. But unless you repent, you too will all perish.’ Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig-tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, “For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig-tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down. Why should it use up the soil?” ‘“Sir,” the man replied, “leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig round it and fertilise it. If it bears fruit next year, fine. If not, then cut it down. Luke 13:1-9
Thought: Jesus is serious about the consequences for continued, unrepentant sin. But thankfully, He’s also serious about the solution – He died to cover our sins in His blood. He gave nothing less than His life for you.
Bible verse: When Israel came out of Egypt, Jacob from a people of foreign tongue, Judah became God’s sanctuary, Israel his dominion. The sea looked and fled, the Jordan turned back; the mountains leaped like rams, the hills like lambs. Why was it, sea, that you fled? Why, Jordan, did you turn back? Why, mountains, did you leap like rams, you hills, like lambs? Tremble, earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the God of Jacob, who turned the rock into a pool, the hard rock into springs of water. Psalm 114
Thought: When we look at God’s creation, we get a glimpse of His might and creativity. Why not spend some time in nature this week, marvelling at God’s power?
Prayer: Lord, You are the God who turned rock into water. Your power is so marvellous – and yet You love me intimately. Thank You so much.
Bible verse: Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a sceptre of justice will be the sceptre of your kingdom. You love righteousness and hate wickedness; Psalm 45: 6-7a
Thought: Whenever bad things happen, people like to ask, “Where is God?” Here is an answer: He is grieving, for He hates wickedness. We follow a merciful and loving God.
Prayer: Lord God, I know that You love justice and mercy. Help Wesley Mission to act in Your name to pursue these things in the world.
Bible verse: I desire to do your will, my God; your law is within my heart.’ I proclaim your saving acts in the great assembly; I do not seal my lips, Lord, as you know. I do not hide your righteousness in my heart; I speak of your faithfulness and your saving help. I do not conceal your love and your faithfulness from the great assembly. Psalm 40:8-10
Thought: The person described in this Psalm is seeking to follow God with his whole heart. Be inspired by his passionate desire to serve the Lord.
Prayer: God, sometimes I find it hard to follow You faithfully. Give me the motivation I need to pursue You always, like this Psalmist.
Bible verse: In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favoured. The Lord is with you.’ Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favour with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants for ever; his kingdom will never end.’ ‘How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’ The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail.’ ‘I am the Lord’s servant,’ Mary answered. ‘May your word to me be fulfilled.’ Then the angel left her. Luke 1:26-38
Thought: Whenever angels appear in the Bible, they tell humans, “Do not be afraid.” Mary is afraid and troubled at first, but she shows great faith in trusting God’s plan.
Prayer: Lord, help me to be like Mary – trusting whatever plan You have for my life, even when it seems strange or frightening.
Bible verse: Then the Lord said to Joshua, ‘Today I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.’ So the place has been called Gilgal to this day. On the evening of the fourteenth day of the month, while camped at Gilgal on the plains of Jericho, the Israelites celebrated the Passover. The day after the Passover, that very day, they ate some of the produce of the land: unleavened bread and roasted grain. The manna stopped the day after they ate this food from the land; there was no longer any manna for the Israelites, but that year they ate the produce of Canaan. Joshua 5:9-12
Thought: While the Israelites wandered in the desert, God provided manna for them to eat every day. Once they arrived in the promised land, they ate what they farmed. God provides, no matter the circumstances.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I sometimes forget Your provision. Help me to remember that all good things come from You – even the things that seem to come from my own labour.
Bible verse: When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy on me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer. Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.’ And you forgave the guilt of my sin. Psalm 32:3-5
Thought: When we keep our sin a secret, it weighs heavily on us, and saps life from us. But when we confess our sin, God forgives. Let Him bear your burden.
Prayer: My Lord, I have sinned and I wish I could hide it from You. But I know You see everything. So please forgive me, and take this guilt away.
Fourth Sunday in Lent
Bible verse: Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering round to hear Jesus. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, ‘This man welcomes sinners, and eats with them.' Luke 15:1-2
Thought: When Jesus was on earth, He chose to spend time with those society rejects. He wants us to know that there is a place in God’s kingdom for everyone.
Prayer: God, I am aware of my sin and failings. But You accept everyone into your Kingdom, through Jesus. Thank You for accepting me. Thank You for accepting those I might think are unacceptable.