Thursday, February 10, 2005

Lent

Here is a pamphlet I put together for the worship committee at my church:


Prosperity Presbyterian Church
We have determined that worship is one of our core values and a central task of our Church. As such, we desire to promote various aspects and activities of worship to the congregation. Ordinarily our emphasis falls upon God’s provision to us in the Word and the sacraments as well as our response back to him in prayer, song, confession, and offering.

Also, we occasionally set aside special days in accord with historic Presbyterianism. As a Church we are beginning to more fully recognize the liturgical seasons of the Christian calender. It’s our desire that by organizing our church year around Scriptural themes the congregation will be helped in redeeming the time, focusing their prayers, and finding both tangible and symbolic outlets to express our faith.

Lent
Every year around this time Christians from around the globe prepare to celebrate the redemption Christ brought about through his death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ at Easter. Lent is a forty-day liturgical season that is designed to assist us in that journey. It initiates perhaps the most sacred part of the Christian year. The season is characterized by various disciplines which serve to help us remember and reflect upon the sacrifice of Christ. A simple, yet wry, truth behind this is that the self-denial helps us anticipate, and delayed gratification helps us appreciate.

We pray that our congregation may use this time to reevaluate fundamental values, better appreciate the mercy and forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel message, and be better prepared to walk in newness of life as the baptized people of God. In 2005, the season begins on February 9th (Ash Wednesday) and concludes on March 26th (Holy Saturday -the Saturday night before Easter).The six Sundays during Lent are never included in the forty-day count because every Sunday is to be a joyful celebration of our Lord's resurrection.

An invitation to the Journey
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross. . . (Heb 12:1-2)

We invite you to view Lent as a journey. It is a journey we make in order to attune our body and soul toward the wonder of the Easter announcement: Christ is risen! During this time our eyes are firmly planted on the example of Jesus in the wilderness. He spent that time praying and fasting in order to prepare for his public ministry. He spent forty days to confront the temptations that aspired to have him abandon his mission and calling. Likewise, as an imitation of Christ (imitatio Christi), we commit this season as our time in the wilderness.

Our Presbyterian Heritage
Everything that I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to it or take from it (Deut 12:32)

The most noted fundamental aspect of Presbyterian worship is known as the "Regulative Principle of Worship." The essence of it is relatively simple: worship must be regulated by the bible. All our worship must be done in ways that are pleasing to God, and we know what is pleasing to him from studying his revelation in Scripture. This will inevitably involve a certain level of creativity and imagination on the part of the interpreter of the bible, nevertheless, it is the bible- not the fancies of our imagination- that we search. Therefore, our recognition of the Disciplines of Lent is ultimately based upon the premise that these are biblical ways of living out the teachings of Scripture.

Repentance, prayer, fasting and love are essential elements to Christian life in the church. The recognition of Lent merely provides the circumstances to live them out. For Presbyterians the formal recognition of this season has typically been considered adiaphora (that which is neither commanded or forbidden but subject to the liberty of conscience). As such, it is to be viewed as an opportunity not an obligation.

The Disciplines of Lent
Lent is characterized by a few simple practices which are approached as a way to partake in a routine and disciplined life. We call these practices the Disciplines of Lent. The traditional disciplines include:
  • Repentance and the confession of sin
  • prayer and Scripture reading
  • Fasting and deprivation
  • Works of love and charitable giving
  • Repentance and the confession of sin
I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, I will confess my transgressions to the LORD," and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. (Psalm 32:5)

Repentance is a gift from God involving our turning away from sin toward him. In it, we are not only allowed to see how sin is contrary to God’s nature and law, but moreover, he promises mercy in Christ. Inevitably it involves an apprehension of the danger and filthiness of sin and a determined aversion to it with a resolve to walk anew in paths of righteousness and holiness.

Repentance will often find expression in the confession of sins. This can be done either publically or privately. Here are some ways in which you might want to formally incorporate the discipline of repentance in your Lenten activities:
  • pray the general confession of sins by the congregation within the context of our Sunday morning liturgy.
  • examine your life in light of the Ten Commandments and the catechism’s interpretation of them asking God to forgive you and to lead you into ways of loving him and your neighbor more deeply.
  • make confession of your sins to a faithful friend or brother in Christ especially if he was affected negatively by something you did or if tension exists between the two of you.
    take advantage of private confession of sins to a Minister of the Gospel
  • think back on your baptism and read the confession and catechism questions on baptism and the sacraments so as to soberly and gratefully reflect upon various realities concerning baptism's nature and the privileges conferred in it.

Making time for prayer and Scripture reading
Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes. (Daniel 9:3)

Prayer may be described as a part of worship in which we are drawn to God in communication. It is required by God for all people to pray as a special part of religious worship. In order for it to be acceptable, it must be made in the name of the Son, by the help of his Spirit, and according to his will. It should always be done thoughtfully with reverence, humility, and a fervency of faith, love, and hope.

Many have found it helpful to have a consistent time for it and to create a quiet place for prayer, although prayer can happen anytime and anywhere. A cross and a lighted candle may help create a sense of the "sacred" for your place for prayer. Here are some ways in which you might want to formally incorporate the discipline of prayer in your Lenten activities
  • follow the ancient Christian custom of morning and evening prayer or at specified interval during the day.
  • sign yourself with the cross saying, "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit," followed by a brief moment of silence in recognition that your life is lived under the shadow of the cross in the presence of the triune God.
  • use the book of Psalms, the Ten Commandments, the Creeds or various printed prayers such as the ones in, The Valley of Vision: A collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions.
    to pray the Lord’s prayer each day or parts of it while reading the catechism’s interpretation of it.

    Fasting or abstaining from a simple pleasure.
    For many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. I have often told you about them, and now I have tears as I say it. Their end is destruction, their god is the belly, and they glory in their shame, with their mind set upon earthly things. (Philippians 3:18-19)

Jesus told us that when we fast we are not to make a show of it, like hypocrites do. Hence, a fast is different from a hunger strike: a fast is a personal act of devotion to God, while a hunger strike is usually a public act most often used to shine a spotlight on injustice. Neither is a fast to be some form of eating disorder. It is a disciplined diet, not a revulsion of food or our body.

Fasting is not typically a complete giving up of food all together. Frequently it is merely the giving up or limiting of a particular item or type of food (sweets, desserts, chocolate, butter, fat, eggs, etc.). Water, however, is never to be given up in a fast.

[Children under 16, people over 65, those who are ill or on medication, and pregnant women are not expected to fast. Anyone with any health questions should definitely contact their health care provider for further instruction.]

Here are some ways in which you might want to formally incorporate the discipline of fasting in your Lenten activities:
  • Don't try to be Super-saint with the fasting. If you wish to fast, start slow and do it on just Ash Wednesday and Good Friday or may be one day a week.
  • Be selective as to what days you fast, the early church fasted on Wednesdays (to commemorate His betrayal) and Fridays (to commemorate His crucifixion).
  • Fast from only a single meal rather than through the whole day or have only one simple meal during the day, possibly without meat.
  • Refrain from eating meat on Fridays in Lent, substituting fish for example.
  • Eliminate a food item or type of food for the entire season. Especially consider eliminating sweets or fatty foods.
  • Abstain from or limit a favorite activity (television, movies, etc.) for the entire season.
  • Take the time that you would ordinarily be eating and spend it in prayer to God.
Giving charitably and doing deeds of love.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. . . Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Cor 13:4,7).

The intention of this part of the Lenten Discipline is to connect our faith in God's love for us with actions that express love toward others in both the world and Church. This world is set on embracing parodies of love which are distorted and disfigured manifestations of what authentic humanity is meant to experience. When we as a church gather together as a peaceful and loving family in spite of our differences and difficulties and warmly embrace each member as an equal member, then a powerful message is sent. It is a message of defeat to the hidden forces of prejudice, self-interest, and suspicion at work in the world.

Here are some ways in which you might want to formally incorporate the discipline of deeds love in your Lenten activities:
  • Use Matthew 25:31-40 and Luke 4:18-19 as guides for choosing to do a work of love.
  • Go out of your way to do something nice for somebody at least once a week during Lent.
  • Make a donation for the needy or some sort of special offering for church.
  • Volunteer a portion of your time with a local service organization that serves the poor.
  • Ask how you may be able to visit a shut-in members of the church.
  • Tell others in your sphere of influence that you love them.

Beginning Your Discipline
On this journey you will need the Pax vobiscum, that is, God’s peace and presence to be with and for you. Ultimately, it is only by God the Father, in the accomplishments of the Son, applied to us by the Spirit, that we are truly provided with sustenance. So begin with prayer, asking the Holy Spirit for guidance in choosing those things that would best fit you for your Lenten Discipline. Prayerfully dedicate all your choices to God as a commitment for the six weeks of Lent, and ask that your Lenten Discipline move you closer to God for the sake of the sufferings and death of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Here are some things to keep in mind as you formally incorporate the Lenten disciplines:
  • After making your choices and beginning your discipline, it is not necessary to share your choices with anyone else. In fact, anonymity is regarded as better (Matt.6:1-7, 16-18).
  • Consider keeping a journal for Lent where you record what you will do concerning each of the disciplines and track your experience.
  • Don't be too hard on yourself, too rigorous, or too legalistic. The idea is to have a discipline that moves you spiritually closer to God, not one that focuses you solely on your discipline.
  • Breaking commitments to God is not something to take lightly but people will break the disciplines. This is also a time when we remember the mercy of God and so in prayerful song you can simply embrace the opening words of Psalm 6:2 " O Lord, have mercy on me," praying the Kyrie Eleison and start over.

22 Comments:

Blogger Tim said...

I hope it is well received. I find the church calender does provide a healthy rhythm to the Christian life. But none of the Presbyterian churches I've been to have shown much interest in it.

February 13, 2005 at 12:10 PM  
Blogger Ron said...

Tim,
Could it be that because these churches actually believe in such a thing as a Regulative Principle, and, finding no church calendar in Scripture, eschew it?
Forsooth that anyone professing to be Presbyterian would deny such a stupid statement that 'historic Presbyterians' observe Lenten seasons or pray the Kyrie!
Just go on over to Rome, fellows, and be consistent.
Or, repent.

April 21, 2005 at 7:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

='Brand New News From The Timber Industry!!'=

========Latest Profile==========
Energy & Asset Technology, Inc. (EGTY)
Current Price $0.15
================================

Recognize this undiscovered gem which is poised to jump!!

Please read the following Announcement in its Entierty and
Consider the Possibilities
Watch this One to Trade!

Because, EGTY has secured the global rights to market
genetically enhanced fast growing, hard-wood trees!

EGTY trading volume is beginning to surge with landslide Announcement.
The value of this Stock appears poised for growth! This one will not
remain on the ground floor for long.

Keep Reading!!!!

===============
"BREAKING NEWS"
===============

-Energy and Asset Technology, Inc. (EGTY) owns a global license to market
the genetically enhanced Global Cedar growth trees, with plans to
REVOLUTIONIZE the forest-timber industry.

These newly enhanced Global Cedar trees require only 9-12 years of growth before they can
be harvested for lumber, whereas worldwide growth time for lumber is 30-50 years.

Other than growing at an astonishing rate, the Global Cedar has a number of other benefits.
Its natural elements make it resistant to termites, and the lack of oils and sap found in the wood
make it resistant to forest fire, ensuring higher returns on investments.

the wood is very lightweight and strong, lighter than Poplar and over twice
as strong as Balsa, which makes it great for construction. It also has
the unique ability to regrow itself from the stump, minimizing the land and
time to replant and develop new root systems.

Based on current resources and agreements, EGTY projects revenues of $140 Million
with an approximate profit margin of 40% for each 9-year cycle. With anticipated
growth, EGTY is expected to challenge Deltic Timber Corp. during its initial 9-year cycle.

Deltic Timber Corp. currently trades at over $38.00 a share with about $153 Million in revenues.
As the reputation and demand for the Global Cedar tree continues to grow around the world
EGTY believes additional multi-million dollar agreements will be forthcoming. The Global Cedar nursery has produced
about 100,000 infant plants and is developing a production growth target of 250,000 infant plants per month.

Energy and Asset Technology is currently in negotiations with land and business owners in New Zealand,
Greece and Malaysia regarding the purchase of their popular and profitable fast growing infant tree plants.
Inquiries from the governments of Brazil and Ecuador are also being evaluated.

Conclusion:

The examples above show the Awesome, Earning Potential of little
known Companies That Explode onto Investor�s Radar Screens.
This stock will not be a Secret for long. Then You May Feel the Desire to Act Right
Now! And Please Watch This One Trade!!


GO EGTY!


All statements made are our express opinion only and should be treated as such.
We may own, take position and sell any securities mentioned at any time. Any statements that express or involve discussions with respect
to predictions, goals, expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance are
not statements of historical fact and may be "forward, looking
statements." forward, looking statements are based on expectations, estimates
and projections at the time the statements are made that involve a number of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results
or events to differ materially from those presently anticipated. This newsletter was paid $3,000 from third party (IR Marketing).
Forward,|ooking statements in this action may be identified through the use of words such as: "projects", "foresee", "expects". in compliance with Se'ction 17. {b), we disclose the holding of EGTY shares prior to the publication of this report. Be aware of an inherent conflict of interest resulting from such holdings due to our intent to profit from the liquidation of these shares. Shares may be sold at any time, even after positive statements have been made regarding the above company. Since we own shares, there is an inherent conflict of interest in our statements and opinions. Readers of this publication are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward,looking statements, which are based on certain assumptions and expectations involving various risks and uncertainties that could cause results to
differ materially from those set forth in the forward- looking statements. This is not solicitation to buy or sell stocks, this text is
or informational purpose only and you should seek professional advice from registered financial advisor before you do anything related with buying or selling stocks, penny stocks are very high risk and you can lose your entire investment.

August 12, 2005 at 3:15 AM  
Blogger Rich Molumby said...

I have a Turnkey Royalty Free site/blog. It pretty much covers making money on the web.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

October 8, 2005 at 4:54 AM  
Blogger Greg said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a really greatSEO site. It pretty much covers seo internship related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

October 18, 2005 at 8:13 PM  
Blogger Google Page Rank 6 said...

Increase your Adsense Earnings

I noticed you have adsense ads on your page, Would you like to increase your earnings from them, Free and Legitimate way to make your clicks increase.
Come see my Blogger blog and it will tell you more.

October 24, 2005 at 11:07 PM  
Blogger Phill said...

I just came across your blog about forex secret and wanted to drop you a
note telling you how impressed I was with the information you have posted here.
I have a forex secret site. It pretty much covers forex secret related stuff.
so I know what I'm talking about when I say your site is top-notch! Keep up the great work, you are providing a great resource
on the Internet here!

Thanks,
Phill

October 25, 2005 at 1:01 AM  
Blogger ebaypowerseller2006 said...

I enjoyed reading your blog. There is a lot of useful information about small business web hosting services in it. We offer Turnkey Websites and Reliable Hosting. We also provide a blogging service that will help your site get indexed fast and keep the search engines visiting your site. Click here for more information about small business web hosting services.
Thank you
TWP Admin

October 25, 2005 at 8:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, I really like this one. I have a website that talks mostly about mlm business opportunity You should check it out sometime.

October 25, 2005 at 9:21 AM  
Blogger Our Lady of Fatima Biloxi said...

I really like your blog about katrina list survivor I am definitely adding you to my favorites list. I have a similar blog that you might be interested in at katrina list survivor come by and check it out when you get the time.

November 10, 2005 at 2:41 PM  
Blogger mauricelando3685 said...

I read over your blog, and i found it inquisitive, you may find My Blog interesting. My blog is just about my day to day life, as a park ranger. So please Click Here To Read My Blog

January 7, 2006 at 8:35 AM  
Blogger sarajones22498340 said...

I read over your blog, and i found it inquisitive, you may find My Blog interesting. So please Click Here To Read My Blog

http://pennystockinvestment.blogspot.com

January 30, 2006 at 11:06 PM  
Blogger answer-man said...

Just dropped in to read your blog. We are reading what others have to say and are introducing ourselves as well. We are intoducing The new Holy Bibles King James Versions and New Living Translations and especially The New Children's Bibles on DVD and invite you to stop by and visit us at: **BibleMediaDvd.Com**

We hope you don't mind our comment on your site and do so repectfully.
Thank you and God Bless.

March 20, 2006 at 2:25 AM  
Blogger megantaft92260543 said...

Get any Desired College Degree, In less then 2 weeks.

Call this number now 24 hours a day 7 days a week (413) 208-3069

Get these Degrees NOW!!!

"BA", "BSc", "MA", "MSc", "MBA", "PHD",

Get everything within 2 weeks.
100% verifiable, this is a real deal

Act now you owe it to your future.

(413) 208-3069 call now 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

May 11, 2006 at 1:01 PM  
Blogger kaylynn2clarence said...

hey, I just got a free $500.00 Gift Card. you can redeem yours at Abercrombie & Fitch All you have to do to get yours is Click Here to get a $500 free gift card for your backtoschool wardrobe

October 2, 2006 at 7:10 AM  
Blogger lk6izg85igao said...

hey, I just got a free $500.00 Gift Card. you can redeem yours at Abercrombie & Fitch All you have to do to get yours is Click Here to get a $500 free gift card for your backtoschool wardrobe

October 3, 2006 at 6:34 AM  
Blogger mz0ubxe90xmxc said...

hey, I just got a free $500.00 Gift Card. you can redeem yours at Abercrombie & Fitch All you have to do to get yours is Click Here to get a $500 free gift card for your backtoschool wardrobe

October 9, 2006 at 11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Watiti.com...
Join me and my circle of friends at http://www.watiti.com, an online social networking community that connects people from all over the world.

Meet new people, share photos, create or attend events, post free classifieds, send free e-cards, listen music, read blogs, upload videos, be part of a club, chat rooms, forum and much more!

See you around! Bring all your friends too!

Watiti.com...

February 20, 2007 at 5:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

無碼影片,情人視訊,正妹牆,聊天室,ut聊天室,視訊聊天室,情色,微風成人,豆豆聊天室,視訊美女,85cc成人片,85cc成人片觀看,交友戀愛進行室,嘟嘟成人網,成人,色情,美女,色情小說,情色貼圖,情色小說,交友覓戀會館,情色文學,交友104速配網,視訊交友,成人韭南籽,18成人,ut男同志聊天室,成人圖片區,交友104相親網,0951成人頻道下載,男同志聊天室,成人貼圖,成人影片,tt1069同志交友網,成人視訊,aio交友愛情館,情色視訊,情色視訊,色情遊戲,交友戀愛小站,

December 9, 2009 at 10:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

舊書不厭百回讀,熟讀深思子自知。..................................................

December 19, 2009 at 8:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

朝著既定的目標走,就不會迷失。..................................................

January 9, 2010 at 6:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

多譏樓主分享 正野緊係要回啦........................................

February 21, 2010 at 12:28 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home