Pastors Note

Pastor's Note
From the desk of Rev. Steve Berger, Senior Pastor

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                                                      February Feasts and Fasts

Living in Louisiana can mean living with extremes and especially in the month when we turn from the celebrations of Valentine's Day and Mardi Gras to the solemn reflections of Lent. Parades and floats move down city and town streets, marching bands play, beads and doubloons are thrown, parties are loud, people act crazy and then with the stroke of midnight on February 25, it all changes. Nothing says this like the army of street sweepers and city workers that descend on the French Quarter after the last parade. Last year over 1200 tons of litter and beads were cleared in that single night, leaving the streets relatively clean for the morning of Ash Wednesday- clearing all debris from the season before.

What if we could do that in our own lives? What if we could wipe the slate clean of the hurtful things we had said and done, the terrible and vengeful thoughts and actions, the lust and envy that we projected on others, the blindness to God's work in our lives and in others and the ways we had influenced others to ignore or refuse God's presence? This is the trash and litter that fills the streets of our lives and keeps us from moving forward to forgiveness and change. The good news is that we have a chance to do this, to renew and refresh our lives and make lasting changes! It's called the Lenten Season- and before you decide if you are going to try to give up chocolate again, remember that Lent is not just about fasting and ordering fish on Fridays. This can be a season of reflection and growth and you need to do this both as a community experience by worship and Bible Study and in your private prayer life.

A good way would be to use our Wednesday night study with a meal based on the book, "Questions God Asks Us". Author Trevor Hudson leads us into a conversation with God in a series of questions to draw us deeper into a relationship of intimacy with God. Questions like, "Where are You?", "Who do you say I am?" are drawn directly from Old and New Testament passages. If you choose to use the Lenten 40 day devotionals from the same author, he has "Pauses for Lent", "40 Words for 40 Days" which we will make available to you. Both the study book and the devotional guide are also available on Kindle. Our Lenten Wednesday Study Series begins on March 11 and ends on April 22, a sign-up sheet will be in the Narthex and the Welcome Center. A meal will be served and study/discussion will be around the table in the Conference Room. Nursery Care will be provided as needed.

Grace and peace,
Pastor Steve