Brief Message from Pastor Becky
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not on rely on your own understanding, acknowledge him in all of your ways, and he will make your paths straight. –Proverbs 3:5-6
I saw a funny meme the other day, that said, “Lord I know it is Lent, but I really didn’t intend to give this much up.” Well, dear friends in Christ, we are not in control. This is pretty obvious right now. However, that has always been true. We were just better at pretending that somehow we were in control. Still today in in the midst of uncertainty and perhaps a complete lack of understanding, we can still lean in and know that God is still present with us, and that “God is our ever present help in times of trouble.” (Ps. 46:1) and perhaps the One we should be spending more time with, and trust when all other things are changing so rapidly. If this is of interest, please see the "Animate Practices: Prayer" below and daily texts on Prayer for contemplation.
And until we get to meet again in person, please know I am praying for all of you and leaning on God myself, but that's a good thing! God's got this, and look at you, you're still here making it work too! May God's love, peace, grace and courage fill you and guide you each day, even if understanding is beyond our comprehension (Isaiah 55:8-9)
Weekly Devotion for consideration:
Animate:Practices: #1. Prayer
For adult education, I had planned on starting Animate Faith Practices. I did find this week’s video at the following source. If you click on it, you should be able to see Brian Mclaren talk about the faith practice #1: Prayer. After you watch this, I invite you to think about the following questions and possibly answer with your family, or send this to a friend, and have them watch it and then call you back and talk through the questions.
Questions for discussion: (Feel free to email Pastor Becky
) with your questions or responses, if you would like. I don’t have another method developed yet…but as time goes by, I might!)
Brian, speaks of having things over the years that have made him think that he was not capable of praying like he should Have there been hurdles that have stopped you from having a stronger prayer life?
How has your understanding of prayer changed over time? (If answering as a family, ask the kids “what you think it means to pray?” Then follow up with the youngest person’s answers to the oldest answering, and adding how their understanding of prayer has changed over the years.)
Collectively, what do you think prayer is for?
What role does prayer play in your life, and are there any ways in which you wish it played a bigger role? How could you maybe do this? (Ideas: Prayer journal; Forming Prayer Partners: calling and talking about your highs and lows and praying for one another once a day or once a week at a set time; Adding times of prayer into your daily routines-waking up, showering, eating, going to sleep)
Brain Mclaren talked about several movements of prayer as seen below. Go through these and talk about the different parts in the Lord’s Prayer and how you might practice them this week as we focus specifically on prayer.
Wake up-taking in God’s presence in the world around you
Tune up-Align your hopes, desires and attitude with God’s ways
Ask-accepting God’s grace and offering that grace to others (Thinking about relationships where we have brokenness and how we can forgive others…)
Prepare for re-entry-After we have centered ourselves in God, how can we center back in God’s presence, before going back to our daily tasks (This makes me think of the Kung Fu Panda movies, and searching for “inner peace”. Perhaps, instead though, we are looking for connecting with God’s peace to full and guide us. Possibly meditating with a breath prayer: Breathe in and hold it for a while saying, “God.” Then breath out slowly saying, “You are with me.” And repeating this several times until we feel God’s peace accompanying us.
Daily Texts on prayer for the coming week:
(Possibly journal on what you get out of each passage concerning prayer and your life.)
Tuesday: Psalm 94:17-19
Wednesday: John 15:4-9
Thursday: Matthew 7:7-11
Friday: Matthew 6:5-15
Saturday: Matthew 6:25-34
Sunday: Romans 8:26-28
Monday: Romans 12:9-15,21
May God's peace be yours,
Pastor Becky <><