Welcome to Lent 1 and the season of temptation and spiritual discipline. This week we get stories about the temptation of Adam and Eve and of Jesus, and a comparison of the sin of Adam to the salvation of Jesus (in the RCL). The Narrative Lectionary brings us the Golden Rule, the story of the Good Samaritan, and Mary and Martha. How is your Lenten journey going so far? Are you more in line with Jesus and the Samaritan and Mary, or with Adam and the Levite and Martha? If you’re anything like me, Lent is a time when it’s easy to be worried and distracted by many things… sometimes at the expense of loving the neighbor. However your own spiritual disciplines are going, remember – every day is a new chance to renew your commitment to your practices.
How is your sermon preparation coming along? Have you invited your congregation into any specific practices this season? Do you have a theme that is guiding your worship throughout this season? This first Sunday in Lent is a chance to remind folks of the importance of spiritual disciplines like prayer, Bible study, worship, and generosity to those in need. You might be using the opportunity to begin a preaching series or a 6-week service project or some other initiative. Please share your ideas with the group!
Perhaps you are reminding your people of the ancient practice of using Lent as a preparation for baptism. In my congregation, we are beginning new member classes this Sunday, which will run for 3 weeks before we receive new members in worship. Not quite the same as a 40-day catechesis, but meaningful nonetheless. What new ministries are coming to your congregation this weekend, or what is in the works for upcoming weeks?
Whether your sermon is well-developed or still in its infancy… whether you have the entire season of Lent planned out or it caught you by surprise… whether you are prepared with a worship order or are still looking for hymn ideas… welcome to the Preacher Party! We look forward to hearing your suggestions and comments. Check out these thinks for additional discussion on the RCL or NL readings. Pull up a chair and enjoy a virtual snack and join on in. I’ve got wine and tea to share (depending on your preference and time zone). Welcome to the party!
canoeistpastor is Katya Ouchakof, co-pastor at Lake Edge Lutheran Church in Madison, WI. She is a certified canoeing instructor, occasional hospital chaplain, aunt to the best kids in the world, and a devout Star Wars fan. Katya is a contributor to There’s a Woman in the Pulpit, and blogs periodically at Provocative Proclamations.
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