March 25, 2019

Dear FPC—

              We are about half way through Lent.  This 40 day period of preparation before Easter is a time gift from God to you.  It isn’t a burden—it is a gift!  If you are like me, your plans for Lenten devotions or fasts have only sometimes shown up in your life over the last 3 weeks.  That’s ok—perfection is not needed, but persistence does pay off!  I invite you to recommit to a Lenten practice for the rest of our time leading up to Easter.  Don’t let the past keep you from the present that connects you to Jesus! 

The other day I heard Trevor Hudson (a Methodist pastor and author from South Africa) talking about Lent.  He suggested four guiding questions we can use in thinking about our Lenten practice:

 

  • Is what you are doing going to help you be prepared to enter more fully into the mystery of Good Friday and Easter? 

  • Will it deepen your friendship with Christ?  (ask God each day ‘what would you like to do for our friendship today?’)

  • Will it increase your freedom from addictive patterns in your life?

  • Will it draw you into deeper engagement with people around you?  (does it make you a better person to live with?)

 

The litmus test of any spiritual practice is whether it increases and deepens the quality of my relationships with God, with those around me, and with those in pain. 

If you’d like ideas of things you can do—consider fasting from something that distracts you and replace it with some intentional quiet time with God.  For resources, visit our “Lenten Soul Training” page  https://www.fpcogden.org/advent-devotions

               Lent comes from the word for Spring, and Spring is a time for growth.  Turn towards the Son and grow!

               Grateful for you,

 

              Pastor Steve