Pastor’s thoughts for the upcoming Lenten season
February 14th marks the beginning of the season of Lent, traditionally a time to meditate more on all that Jesus has done for us, especially His death and resurrection. Thinking of Him, talking to Him and the Father, in the Holy Spirit can be thought of as prayer. What is prayer after all? In its simplest definition it IS our relationship to God and how we express that relationship.
During the six weeks of Lent leading up to Holy Week and Easter, the Church throughout the ages invited Christians to embrace individually selected disciplines such as fasting, prayer and extra works of love, compassion and mercy directed towards those who are needy—the purpose of these disciplines is not to “earn favor” with God but to more deeply appreciate God’s love and kindness to us. The God of the Christian does not demand strong faith and deep insights before He takes us to Himself. Rather, a sort of “spiritual spring training” during the forty days of Lent is intended to deepen our awareness of the loving God that we already know!
As earth-bound persons, we have need of prayer…..when our strength fails us, for comfort in times of pain, for direction when we don’t know which way to turn, for someone to talk to when we’re lonely, for courage to keep on going when everything is going wrong—and certainly to celebrate when great things happen! It feels good to pray, to know that God is there for our needs, to listen to us, to share our joys and sorrows, our fears and hopes, our dreams and disappointments, our friendships and loneliness, our family concerns and innermost thoughts.
God is in our innermost being, helping us, encouraging us, energizing us, lifting us up, literally to heaven (Col. 3:1-3). There is no one, no thing that cannot be helped, lifted up, healed and made utterly whole through prayer, since “Things that are impossible for man are possible for God” (Luke 18:27)!
Our Wednesday Soup Suppers during Lent will be followed by devotions focusing on the different types of prayer in God’s Word, such as hope, healing, praise, comfort, repentance, lamentation, intercession, and so forth. I hope you can come and share with us our love for prayer and our love especially for God who hears our prayers! I thank the “Guideposts Treasury of Prayer” for some of the above thoughts.
The Lenten season begins February 14th with Ash Wednesday. We hold an Ash Wednesday worship service at 5:45 p.m.
Each Wednesday of Lent, following Ash Wednesday, we have Soup Suppers beginning at 5:45 p.m. followed by Devotions at 6:15 p.m. in our Fireside Room. Soup Suppers will be held February 21st through March 21st. All are welcome!
PALM SUNDAY is March 25th. Zion’s Palm Sunday worship service begins at 9:30 a.m.
Maundy Thursday is March 29th. We will have our traditional Maundy Thursday worship service at 6:00 p.m.
Good Friday is March 30th. We will observe Good Friday with our traditional worship service at 6:00 p.m.
EASTER SUNDAY is April 1st. The 9:30 a.m. worship service is followed by Zion’s traditional Easter potluck brunch. All are welcome!