Message From Our Pastor...
4For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, 5so we, who
are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. –Romans 12:4-5
Lent has begun and we are
called to gather together in Christ for the sake of the world. We are
called to practice our Christianity throughout our lives – making God’s
Kingdom a Kin-dom that brings abundant life to all. I’m sure you’ve got
all that under control, right? Maybe not, if we’re honest, probably
not. There are a couple of reasons for that though, one of which is our
own brokenness; we’re just never going to get it all right one hundred
percent of the time. It’s true, you know it, I know it, and God knows
it as well. This is why we have the body of Christ to lean on and maybe
lean into in our lives.
A quick reminder, one way we understand the body of
Christ is the church. The church (the called, gathered, enlightened,
and sanctified body of people who come together in prayer, praise and
thanksgiving) is the body of Christ in the world today. You are a part
of that body. You are an important part. You are just one part. So when
you fail, some other part of the body will pick you up. When you fail,
some other part of the body will succeed. When you are out there
in the world filled with the power of the Holy Spirit making the lives
of people better, spreading the Gospel, feeding the hungry, healing the
sick or whatever it is the Spirit calls you to do – you are doing it as
part of that same body of Christ.
During Lent we are given an opportunity to
practice being the body of Christ is a deliberate and focused way that
goes beyond what we do at other times during the year. As we focus on
Christ’s journey toward the cross during worship we are called to find
opportunities to practice those basic things that Christians have done
for hundreds of years: prayer, fasting, and acts of true charity.
Each of these are things that we will probably never get perfect, but
we keep practicing, not for ourselves, but because they help us be
better Christians in the world. They help us be better parts of the
body of Christ.
PS – If you’re looking for some help finding ways to
practice your Christianity this lent, check out these resources by
clicking on each link:
Sarah Bessey’s “40 Simple Practices for Lent”
The Lutheran World Federation’s “Together on the Way of the Cross”
ELCA World Hunger’s “40 Days of Giving Calendar”
ELCA World Hunger’s weekly email subscription
Free Children’s Devotional “Don’t Forget to Pray (before sleeping, eating, or flushing)!”
Free Family Devotional “Lions, and Camels, and Goats! Oh My!”
Luther Seminary’s Devotional “Jesus, Keep me Near the Cross”
Ecumenical Lenten Devotional “Set Free By Truth”
Busted Halo’s “InstaLent Creative Photo Challenge"