Pastor’s Corner Rev. Barb Muhs, pastor, Salem Church of Lincoln Lincoln, Iowa
March 7, 2014
On Wednesday we began the season of the church year known as Lent. Lent, as a child meant that we had weekly soup suppers at our church. Each week a different organization within the church would host a soup supper. For one reason or another it seemed as though my mother was involved with each supper, which also meant, her children were there to take trays, clean tables, reset tables etc… For me that part of the evening was o.k. but I really did look forward to the church services in which the choir would sing and I would hear scripture of events of our Lord’s life as he faced his uncertain future. There was something encouraging about hearing these words, words that over the years I too, have repeated in uncertain times and times of trials. When I was 13, newly confirmed, my oldest sister announced that each one of us was to give something up for Lent. I had never heard of that before in my lifetime nor had I learned about THAT in confirmation. You know the list that many people share, no dessert, no chocolate, no pop, etc…Each year I would think of something I could give up and in many cases it wasn’t very difficult to give it up. It was harder to remember that I had given something up. In essence, I chose to eliminate something from my life that wasn’t much of a sacrifice or much of a life changing experience. With age comes wisdom. I learned that if I gave up desserts, I could make them and give them away (especially to the elderly that know a whole cake is too much for them to eat ~ a few pieces were nice). Chocolate ~ well maybe share chocolate when I went to a meeting, just because I gave it up doesn’t mean other did. Pop ~ when tempted to drink a pop put .50 in a mug ( at the end of Lent I had saved 75.00 and bought some chicks through Heifer International. Over the years I have changed from giving something up to working on a spiritual discipline, sending cards, scheduling three times to pray a day, reading more about a biblical person. One key phrase is changing something in my life that will (hopefully) deepen my faithfulness before God. Ah, before GOD, Matthew encourages us to do good BEFORE God, FOR God’s people. May these words from Matthew encourage you and help you during this season of Lent as we seek to follow the footsteps and teachings of our Lord and Savior. “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may bi in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Amen ~ So be it!
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