Pastor’s Note – March 6, 2019

Schweitzer UMCPastor's Note

Brothers and Sisters,

Jake here. Today is Ash Wednesday (which is the first day of Lent) and I wouldn’t be a very good pastor if I didn’t talk about it. Before anything else, I want to call to your attention a couple immediate items of importance:

  1. Today during the lunch hour, we will have our first of seven prayer services, to be held each Wednesday in the main sanctuary from 12:00-12:30 pm. In the spirit of fasting and prayer, we invite you each Wednesday to skip your lunch AND either (a) join us for corporate prayer at Schweitzer or (b) set this time aside, wherever you are, for pursuing God in prayer as we do the same.
  2. Our Ash Wednesday service will be tonight in the main sanctuary from 6:00-6:30 pm. Mark the beginning of this Lenten season with an outward expression of your commitment to Christ and your desire to be filled with his Spirit.

Next, I’d like to share with you the lyrics to a song that I think captures the heart of Schweitzer right now, specifically for those who will be joining us in the difficult discipline of fasting.

To set the stage, I want you to imagine that this season of Lent is like 40 days in the desert with Jesus, or maybe like 40 years in the desert with Israel. God has brought you here, to a desolate place, where you must learn to rely on Him and find comfort in Him (the very reason that we fast as a spiritual discipline). And in this desert, even though God brought you here, even though this is necessary for your spiritual development, you’re tempted to leave, to go back to the life God saved you from, to go back to the comforts of this world. You must have faith that at the right time — when you’re ready — God will lead you out of this desert and into his kingdom. He will clothe you with the power of the Holy Spirit, and you’ll wonder how you ever lived without this power. It will all be worth it. But for now, you must simply stay, wait, pray, trust. You must not go back.

Here’s the song lyrics:

When the Devil says,
“Turn this stone to bread”,
I gotta admit, it’s tempting to try.
Even though I know
We don’t live by bread alone,
And only You can satisfy.

I’m gonna stay here,
I’m gonna pray here,
Until my soul is satisfied.
I’m gonna thank you,
I’m gonna praise you,
Until my soul is satisfied.

In the desert, I
Get weary eyes.
The Devil says, “Go back to where you’re from.”
But I was led here by You,
And You will lead me through.
And in your power you’ll lead me home.

I’m gonna stay here,
I’m gonna pray here,
Until my soul is satisfied.
I’m gonna thank you,
I’m gonna praise you,
Until my soul is satisfied.

The bread of life that comes from heaven,
The blood that covers all my sin,
That Holy Fire/Spirit that burns/lives within,
Only You can satisfy

To be ablaze, but not consumed,
To see Your face, but not be doomed,
God, we want to see You move,
Cause only You can satisfy

We’re gonna stay here,
We’re gonna pray here,
Until our souls are satisfied.
We’re gonna thank you,
We’re gonna praise you,
Until our souls are satisfied.

God bless you all this week, and I hope to see you later today!

In Christ,

Jake