Minister’s March Message
March 01, 2019
The season of Lent, which begins on 6th March this year is the period leading up to Easter in which we are encouraged to focus our attention on the self-sacrifice of Jesus and rid ourselves of those things that make us fall short of what we are meant to be as His followers. For some, this simply means fasting or abstaining from luxuries. For others, rather than giving something up it means taking something on.
Recently I came across a ‘Forty Days Lenten Challenge’ called ‘Forty Days – Forty Items’. In each day of Lent the challenge was for people to remove one item of clothing from their wardrobe and put it into a bin bag. At the end of the forty days these items have to be donated to charity or a place that can share them with someone who really needs them. That might be a Lenten Challenge worth considering.
Another challenge worthy of consideration is giving up one hour of your time each week during Lent to join a Lenten Study Group. This year ‘Clarkston Churches Together’ thought it would be a good idea for all of our churches to take part in a study together at various locations and times during each week.
The study chosen has been prepared by The Mission Theology Advisory Group of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland [CBTI]. In 2017 this group ran a mission project for the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. It was called, ‘The 95 missional theses project’, and every day for 95 days before the anniversary on 31st October 2017, the group issued a statement, based on the five marks of mission, about the sort of church in which people might believe. [Details of this can be found on the CBTI website at https://ctbi.org.uk/]. The statement that, overwhelmingly, got the most attention was: ‘We believe in a church that is more concerned with the mystery that is God than with its own success’. Based on this statement, a Lenten Study called the ‘Mystery of God’ was prepared to help people delve more deeply into the mystery of God and to help them try to rediscover what draws them in their search for God.
The study and the dates and times of all the locations will be made available at every Clarkston Together Church from Sunday 24th February. Unless they want to, no one has to go to the same location each week; you can mix and match as it suits your own plans. Extensive biblical knowledge is not a prerequisite either – the only requirement is openness to our brothers and sisters in Christ and giving up an hour of time in each week of Lent.
Whatever you do in these Lenten weeks may it be a meaningful time for you and a useful time to reflect on your relationship with God in Jesus Christ.
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