Lent – April 1

Wednesday night, April 1, we encourage all members of Trinity Lutheran Church, Nampa to pray this devotional at 7pm. You may wish to light a candle as a way of inviting the light of Christ into your sacred space.

(Thanks to Sharon Jones for contributing to this devotion)

Our theme for midweek Lent evening prayer is Open our Lives.

Photograph by Trinity member Mary Braudrick

March 4 was “Open our Eyes.”

March 11 was “Open our Hands.”

March 18 was “Open our Ears.”

March 25 was “Open our Hearts.”

April 1 is “Open our Lives.”

Psalm 141 (Song of Forgiveness and Protection)

1 I call upon you, O Lord; come quickly to me;
give ear to my voice when I call to you.
2 Let my prayer be counted as incense before you,
and the lifting up of my hands as an evening sacrifice.

3 Set a guard over my mouth, O Lord;
keep watch over the door of my lips.
4 Do not turn my heart to any evil,
to busy myself with wicked deeds
in company with those who work iniquity;
do not let me eat of their delicacies.

5 Let the righteous strike me;
let the faithful correct me.
Never let the oil of the wicked anoint my head,
for my prayer is continually
against their wicked deeds.
6 When they are given over to those who shall condemn them,
then they shall learn that my words were pleasant.
7 Like a rock that one breaks apart and shatters on the land,
so shall their bones be strewn at the mouth of Sheol.

8 But my eyes are turned towards you, O God, my Lord;
in you I seek refuge; do not leave me defenceless.
9 Keep me from the trap that they have laid for me,
and from the snares of evildoers.
10 Let the wicked fall into their own nets,
while I alone escape.

Litany (Sundays and Seasons)

When our lives are joyous and laughter abounds, Christ is dwelling there.

When the news is grim and we have nowhere to turn, Christ is dwelling there.

In the water and word, the bread and wine, Christ is dwelling there.

In our life and our death, in the new life to come, Christ is dwelling there.

Prayer

Open our lives, Lord, to reflect your glory. Lead us to the cross, to the grave, to the empty tomb, and into the world as imitators of Christ. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Readings

Deuteronomy 30:15-20

15 See, I have set before you today life and prosperity, death and adversity. 16If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I am commanding you today, by loving the Lord your God, walking in his ways, and observing his commandments, decrees, and ordinances, then you shall live and become numerous, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to possess. 17But if your heart turns away and you do not hear, but are led astray to bow down to other gods and serve them, 18I declare to you today that you shall perish; you shall not live long in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess. 19I call heaven and earth to witness against you today that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, 20loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and holding fast to him; for that means life to you and length of days, so that you may live in the land that the Lord swore to give to your ancestors, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.

Galatians 2:15-21

15 We ourselves are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners; 16yet we know that a person is justified not by the works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ. And we have come to believe in Christ Jesus, so that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by doing the works of the law, because no one will be justified by the works of the law. 17But if, in our effort to be justified in Christ, we ourselves have been found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not! 18But if I build up again the very things that I once tore down, then I demonstrate that I am a transgressor. 19For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; 20and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.21I do not nullify the grace of God; for if justification comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.

Reflection by Trinity Member Sharon Jones

When My Heart and Eyes Were Opened

When I was 13 years old I went to a church camp in McCall, Quaker Hill.. That is when I was touched by God. The music and the love of Christ came into my heart. The youth pastor and music director was a big influence on the youth in that camp. I lived that life until I was about 18, then I took a different path, for about thirteen years or so.  Oh, I went to church off and on, but was not a faithful servant

A neighbor, or should I say angel invited me to church, the other Lutheran church.   My life changed slowly to an active life centered in Christ. You might say my eyes were open again, and they have stayed that way for the last forty years.  My heart belongs to Christ now.  He has blessed me beyond my wildest imagination.

I came to Trinity in 1997.  We had been to the wedding of one of Trinity’s members sons and my daughter’s best friend.  It was held at the Catholic church, Father John was  officiating, with Pastor Eric Wilson Wieberg, from Trinity.  When Kristi started down the aisle  Pastor Eric held up a sign that said, ‘it is about time’. I turned to my husband and said that is our new church.  It has been twenty three years since I came to Trinity. My eyes and heart were first opened at 13.

There is a God Wink to this story, one of our members’ sister is married to the brother of that young man who was the youth pastor and music director at  Quaker Hill camp.

I love God, I love this church and I love everyone of you.

-Sharon

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1 Response to Lent – April 1

  1. Linda McQueen says:

    Pastor Meggan, Thanks to you and to Sharon Jones.

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