March 2023

May the peace and grace of Christ Jesus, our Lord, be with you all as we journey together "Beneath the Cross of Jesus" during this Season of Lent.

By the time you may be reading this, we will be one full week into our 2023 Lenten Season. Lent is a time to "experience the flow of God's grace," author, Pastor David L. Miller of St. Timothy Lutheran Church in Naperville, Illinois, wrote as he shared a beautiful photo of a river trimmed on both sides with the ice and snow of winter. Along with the photography, the caption: "Falling into the river ..." caught my attention. These were his exact descriptive words: "The river of God's life and love bursts from the bottomless spring of grace and flows through every moment in time. Falling into the river is what Lent is for."

Now for me, the imagery of falling into an icy, cold river caused all kinds of images to race through my mind, especially since my husband and his rafting friends made a trip down the Lehigh Gorge this year in JANUARY! I guess it's a whitewater thing, sort of like a Polar Plunge in wet suits, but even so Pastor Miller's words sparked my interest to read on.

Pastor Miller wrote how during Lent we tend to focus more on our attempts at repentance and all our human failures rather than on our "God revealed by Jesus, the one who loved his own and loved them totally, right to the end."

I interpret this as: God is forgiving and full of grace because of what Christ did for us on the cross.

Pastor Miller also wrote these words on how Lent has changed for him since his childhood: "It's a time for drawing close to the river where one is more easily drawn into the currents of unspeakable grace, there to forget every sadness and despair, there to have every haunting failure and preoccupation with self, swept away in the endlessness of an eternal mercy." Oh how true!

Some of Pastor Miller's suggested practices for Lent were different than the traditional disciplines we're used to hearing. He says:
Name our deaths ... loss of health, relationships, jobs, dreams.
Refuse to cling ... turning over to God all that we hold on to even though "it" drags us down.
Grieve what has been lost ... allowing our "sadness, remorse, guilt, and anger" to be offered to God in prayer.
Claim your births ... claim the spirit of the new life and new realities that will come to the surface as those "waters of the river" figuratively or literally wash over us making us free once again.
Rejoice each day ... find time each day to give thanks for the gift of life and breathe in God's grace even in the worst of moments! (That can be a tough one, but do it anyway even if it isn't authentic. God knows your situation and deepest valleys.)

Dear Friends in Christ, Pastor Miller certainly gives us some new ways to "DO LENT" spinning away from the old "dirge" of Lent. And those who know me ... know I prefer to focus on the side of grace. Why? Because I'm grounded in Lutheran theology, and because life is too short to focus inward and downward in any discipline of Lent. Not sure you can do this alone? The good news is you don't have to!

Come to Trinity on Wednesdays in Lent for soup at 6:00 pm followed by our midweek services with this year's theme, "Beneath the Cross of Jesus," beginning at 7:00 p.m. throughout the month of March, and become re-acquainted with the story of Jesus from Palm Sunday through Ascension Sunday as we view clips from the DVD entitled, "Jesus" (a musical performed by the Sight & Sound Theatre).

The river, whether it be in Naperville, Illinois, or right here along the Lehigh River and Gorge, flows freely even in the midst of the ice formations of winter like "the currents of unspeakable grace." Remember God's grace finds its way to each of us in this Lenten Season and every season.

In God's grace,

The Reverend Nancy L. Moore, Pastor

Service Schedule

Sunday Worship

9:30 AM

First Saturday of the Month

5:00 PM

Quiet Communion—First Tuesday of the Month

11:00 AM

Sunday School

10:45 AM

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