March Newsletter

Pastor's Note 

Making sense of Lent has always been a struggle. Sure, the liturgical color is the same as Advent, assuming one notices such things, but it can be difficult to come to grips with what we are anticipating. In Advent we anticipate so much; the birth of the savior, the celebration of Christmas, the beginning of a New Year. Lent, the word comes from an older word meaning to lighten, since the days are getting longer, is used ironically in my view. We know that Jesus is going to the cross. We know that the story is not unfolding the way we would want it. We see the ending and want to slow Jesus down and ask him to play the game just a little bit. But he does not.

Of course, for the Christian, even though the days outside are getting longer, our time with Jesus on earth shortens as we head to the cross. It is important for us to occupy a spiritual space where we are able to come to grips with this reality. That moment in the apostles Creed reminds us that Jesus, “was crucified, dead, and buried.” Christmas might make some sense without the season of Advent though I am glad we have it, but Easter would make no sense without Lent. It would mean ignoring the very confrontation with the principalities and powers of the world that occurs throughout Jesus’ ministry, which is why he is put to death. It would mean ignoring the seeming victory of death, a victory that still seems very real to us today. Yet, we know through the witness of the church and through faith that death does not have the final say or victory.

I am glad we will experience this season together this year. I am glad and I rejoice that we will have more opportunities to be together in fellowship soon. Even as we join one another on this journey to the cross we know that we do not go on this journey alone. We do so as the church. We do so in the Power of the Spirit. We do so knowing that the journey Jesus is on is our journey, too. We do not back away or live in fear of displaying God’s righteousness to the world. We recognize the full humanity and dignity of our neighbors, and we welcome the stranger. We do this because this is what Jesus did. It is risky, even dangerous, but it is good!

Wishing you a Blessed Lent!
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