(updated 03-01-23) “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you alone, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are justified in your sentence and blameless when you pass judgment. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and sustain in me a willing spirit.” Psalm 51:1-4, 10-12 NRSV
We are moving through the season of Lent together at the Baldwinsville First United Methodist Church. Lent is a season for self-reflection. A season for taking a close look at our behaviors and motives and asking God to change the things in us that need to be changed for the Kingdom of God to come more richly among us.
For many years, I engaged Lent as a punitive exercise designed to take away chocolate or some “sinful pleasure” for a month and a half so my reunion with the items sacrificed could be enjoyed again every Sunday and as I desired after Easter Sunday. Perhaps this is still your practice – perhaps you have given up Lent, for Lent!
I would like to offer an alternative approach to this Lenten Journey. I invite you to read and re-read Psalm 51. It is King David’s Psalm of repentance. In this Psalm we find King David completely undone by the stench and depth of his sin. He realizes that although he has harmed many people in his sin, the true harm has been done to the God of Israel – our God who is Love.
I invite you to join me in taking time to sit quietly in God’s presence and ask God to reveal to you the brokenness within that God would heal, the strength and gifting within that God would use, and the unconditional unmerited love that God has for you. I believe this approach will bear more fruit than giving up candy or ignoring Lent all together. God will join us on this journey – we are not alone!
Come and join us for worship this Sunday morning at 9:00 A.M. for our Heritage worship service featuring our choir and familiar hymns. It has been exciting to have our church family returning and worshipping together. If you can’t make it to church on Sunday morning, you can find us live on Facebook at around 9:20 a.m. each Sunday – you can go back and watch or rewatch these services anytime! We’ll save you a seat!
Serving Christ with You,
Pastor Bill Mudge
Join us on facebook