Wednesday, February 26th was Ash Wednesday. We held three services: 6AM, 12 Noon, 6PM. With the coming of Ash Wednesday, we begin the journey of Lent for 40 days (46 days if you count Sundays. The early church considered Sundays to be little Easters so they did not count them). What a great way to start Lent!
Lent is a season to remember and follow Jesus. 40 days comes from the length of time Jesus spent praying and fasting in the wilderness. Jesus fasted and prayed and resisted the devil in this season while remaining true to God’s purpose. Jesus began His public ministry after His time of spiritual preparation. In following Jesus’ pattern, we can prepare our lives for God’s purpose. In the journey of Lent, we will remember and meditate on Jesus’ passion. Lent will culminate with Holy Week, Good Friday, and Easter on April 12th.
There is exciting news for this season of Lent. We will be preaching about Heaven. Over the next six weeks of worship we will offer teachings from the Scripture. We will focus on these questions. Is there a Heaven? What will it be like? How do I know for sure I’m going to Heaven when I die? If you have questions, please let us know and we will address them? Hope you make plans to be in worship every week through Easter. Invite others to come and learn more about Heaven.
Our 144 discipleship/leadership study had our opening launch last Monday. Most of the groups have open spots and are awaiting your participation. We will launch a 12th group after the first 11 are filled. Please go to our website and read more about the options which range from varying days and times. You can also watch our launch service and teaching about the 144. You are invited to jump in and invite someone to participate. We will keep participation open the first 3 weeks until March 15.
Are you looking for an idea to incorporate in Lent? I received this idea from Bishop Leeland several years ago. It is called 1-1-1. The plan is each day we will seek to send 1 letter or encouraging email, make 1 phone call or text of encouragement daily, and make 1 personal visit to someone each day. Can we imagine how many people we would impact for Jesus in Lent by following this plan?
May all here at Shalimar UMC, the community, and region have a high and holy Lent! May we seek to be more like Jesus every day! May grace rise like a tide and sweep through our hearts and campus!