During our Ash Wednesday worship, we were invited into the discipline of Lent—self-examination and repentance, prayer and fasting, sacrificial giving and works of love. We hear this invitation, but what does that mean for you?
Today, I would invite you to reflect on how you might specifically take this on. Will you make a commitment to daily Bible reading and reflection? Will you give up your $5 coffee and set that money aside to give away? Will you volunteer your time at the food pantry? Will you give up desserts because few things feel like a bigger sacrifice?
However you plan to take on the discipline of Lent, be reminded that this isn’t about torturing ourselves, although it might feel like that at times, but rather this is a way to raise our awareness of and refocus our minds on God. When your tummy craves some chocolate, be reminded of Christ’s sacrifice for you. When you feel like you don’t have time for volunteer work, remember that Jesus came to help those who needed it most. When your sacrificial giving means giving up something you want, be reminded that Jesus gave so much more.
I pray that Lent will be a time to refocus your life. A time when you will become aware of the ways that Jesus sacrificed for us. A time when you will commit to this life as a disciple of Christ.
If you ever want to talk about what this might look like for you, please feel free to reach out. We take this journey together.
Next Wednesday, February 17 will be the beginning of our Lenten Season. I hope that you will join us for the many Lenten activities we have planned for this year. A few things to consider:
1. Ash Wednesday Zoom Fellowship – We’re going to try out a Zoom fellowship on Ash Wednesday. Grab a cup of soup, and join us as we check in and chat. We’ll begin at 6 pm and this will lead right into worship at 6:30 pm. Click here for Soup Supper.
2.Lenten Soup Challenge – Each Friday, beginning tomorrow, we will post favorite soup recipes. Consider making soup to enjoy on Wednesday evenings and better yet, share your favorite recipe. Take a picture of your yummy soup and post it on our Facebook page so we all can enjoy! You can submit your favorite recipes to Linda Weaver. Click here to email Linda Weaver.
3.Ash Wednesday Worship – Join us for Ash Wednesday worship at 6:30 pm on February 17. This is a time to gather for prayer, confession, and preparation for the season ahead. We will be marked with the cross in a special way this year, so bring along your tattoos (you will receive these in the mail) as well as a wet washcloth. We’ll meet on Facebook to worship together.
I hope you will join me as we begin this season of reflection and prayer that leads us to the final days of Christ’s death and resurrection.
Why You Should Attend
Our Annual Meeting is this Sunday after worship on Zoom. Now, I fully understand there are a lot of things you could do rather than attending a meeting. But I hope you will consider joining us and here are my top 5 reasons why you should!
1. In a year that has been challenging, we have continued to be the church. Come and see the ministry we have done together. There will even be a fancy video with music…ohhhh!
2. Come and vote! We need at least 39 confirmed members present to hold an official meeting. Come and put your fellow members to work!
3. If you don’t want to get voted in, you better show up!
4. Come and hear updates about our new kitchen remodel and safely gathering again.
5. Come and share your smiling face because I would love to see your smiling face!
I hope to see you on Sunday. Our registration on Zoom will begin at 10:15am with our meeting beginning around 10:30am.
Until we meet again,
On Wednesday, February 17 we will enter the season of Lent with Ash Wednesday. In typical COVID fashion, our Lenten activities will look a bit different this year. There will not be any soup suppers or Maundy Thursday feasts. We will not gather in our building each week, but we will gather online. It’s going to look different, but perhaps that’s OK. Because Lent is a different time in our church calendar.
Despite feeling there is nothing to do right now, it is easy to set our faith aside. There’s always something to watch on TV or a Facebook conversation to track. With all the distractions of life, this Lent I invite you into a time of intentionality. Carve out time each day or each week, to contemplate your Lenten journey. Consider what it means to be a disciple of Jesus. Where might you be falling short? Where might you grow in the coming year? What can you commit to that will give you life and grow your faith?
This Lent, I have a few resources for you to consider using as you journey through this season:
1. Sunday & Midweek Lenten Worship – Commit to joining us for worship on Sundays & Wednesdays throughout Lent. On Wednesdays, our worship theme will be: Resilience: An Act of Faith & Hope. These services will be put together by Pastors of the La Crosse Area Synod, including myself. Throughout this series, we will look at biblical stories of resilience and consider our own resilience.
2. Lent in a Bag – pick up a bag from Peace with items and devotions to reflect on throughout the season. This can be done as a family devotion or even individually as you contemplate the season. Bags will be available at Peace beginning February 14. Please Sign Up Here if you’re interested in getting a bag!
3. Devotions – Commit to reading a daily devotion throughout Lent. Pick up a Christ in Our Home Devotional from Peace or check out the many apps on your smartphone. I would suggest “Pray as you go” or “d365”.
4. Prayer – Join our Connect and Pray group each Tuesday at 1 pm or sign up for the Peace Prayer Chain and pray for the needs of our congregation. Just let me know if you’re interested in either of these opportunities and I’ll get you connected! Lent is a time of reflection and growth. I hope you will live with intentionality this Lent by experiencing the ever-present mercy, grace and love of Jesus Christ.