Sunday, March 30, 2014

April 2014 newsletter article

"Jesus cried out,
‘My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?’…
…and with a scream, he yielded up his spirit.
And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two…”
- Matthew 27:46-51

We are surrounded by busy-ness. We rush to get here and there, to accomplish this and that, to meet the obligations of contemporary life. The busy nature of 21st century life is the narrative offered by this broken world, into which we live. But the world’s narrative, fueled by the corruptions of sin and alienation, holds no atonement for us or for our families. It only serves itself.

Lent is a rebellion against the narrative of the world. Lent is a reminder to us that the narrative that REALLY matters, the narrative that REALLY defines us as disciples of Jesus, is the Grand Story of Israel – of a loving God who chooses a people through whom he will save his creation, of prophets through the ages calling people to faithfulness, of a God so desperate to be with us that he came into the world in Jesus and ultimately suffered a horrific death that we might have the opportunity to know his everlasting peace.

Lent teaches us that our own desires and opinions pale next to the Story of Jesus on the day he died. 

Worship…ministry…work…life…these are not about you or me or our wants. They never were. They are all about Jesus and, in this season of the year, the great suffering he endured for us. Lent is a corrective to our own self-centeredness and our focus on the wrong things. This is what Word and Sacrament are all about.

I encourage us all during the final, brutal weeks of Lent to pray that God’s Spirit does a mighty work in us and among us, that the Story of Jesus becomes paramount in all that we think, say and do…that the glories of Easter morning might truly become transformative and redemptive.

God loves you more than you know,

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