February 24th, 2016

The day has shifted from gloom and rain to blazing sunlight, a welcome transformation. Tonight at 5:30 we host the Lenten dinner, then worship in our sanctuary. I had been worried about attendance given the rain. In fact, we had a plan for what to do in case of snow! Instead the sanctuary is suffused with light, in keeping with the saying "We plan, God laughs."

When I lived in Ithaca, NY, another common saying was "If you don't like the weather, wait 30 minutes." I've heard that said here in Blacksburg, too, where it seems equally applicable. The phrase can also apply to time spent with God. Lifting an event to God may bring great clarity right away. Having a way forward, or at least a sense that we are not alone, can change our hearts and lift our spirits. At other times when we feel depressed and dark within, being with God can give us the strength to endure even if the darkness persists around us.

Lent is a time when we are encouraged to increase contemplation and prayer, which can lead to feeling more secure about God's care and nearness. At the very least we can establish a track record to look back on. That way, if we find ourselves feeling alone, we can remember other times when God was near. Many of the psalms begin with distress, then the psalmist remembers God's faithfulness in the past and ends with
words of hope. It is very like a day that starts with rain, but turns to blazing sunshine.

Peace, Catherine

Scripture Readings: Isaiah 55:1-9; Luke 13:1-9

The prayer list can be found here.