When the disciples have no clue, but a blind man gets it, that teaches us something! How is it that Jesus’ disciples have no idea what He’s talking about but a blind man cannot be silenced but cries out for Jesus’ mercy? To know Jesus is to know that He came to save us and to live as one of His people is to cry out continually for His mercy. The answer to that cry for mercy is exactly what happens to Him: He suffers, dies, and rises again the third day to save us. That’s what Lent is all about and we turn our eyes to Calvary as our Pre-Lent countdown ends this weekend with Quinquagesima (50 days ’til Easter)!
And speaking of Lent, these 40 holy days begin THIS WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 26 which is ASH WEDNESDAY. Join us for our first LENTEN SUPPER at 5:30 PM. DIVINE SERVICE is at 7:00 PM and will include the IMPOSITION OF ASHES. Why do we receive ashes on Ash Wednesday? They are a reminder of our repentance: that the Holy Spirit is turning us away from our selfish sins to faith and trust in Jesus who suffered, died, and rose for us. The words spoken as the ashes are put on our foreheads reminds us of the consequences of sins and at the same time our salvation in Jesus: “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, in the sure and certain hope of the resurrection to everlasting life.”
Ash Wednesday Ashes
Do you have to give something up for Lent? Lent is often seen as a time for “giving something up” to help us consider Jesus’ suffering. But does giving up chocolate or alcohol (or whatever) really mean you’ll suffer like Jesus did? Hardly! The traditional Lenten disciplines of fasting, prayer, and almsgiving are ways to spend extra time and money focusing our hearts and minds on God’s Word. The easiest way to observe Lent is to take extra time (Wednesdays) to hear Jesus’ words and receive His body and blood. Our catechism reminds us: “Fasting and bodily preparation are indeed fine outward training, but he is truly worthy and well prepared [to receive Communion] who has faith in these words: ‘Given and shed for you, for the forgiveness of sins.’”
Lenten Suppers 5:30pm on Wednesdays Zion will have a table TOMORROW at the MCHENRY EXPO at McHenry West High School. Stop by and say hello if you’re there. Kids can spin the wheel and win a prize. Thanks to our Board of Outreach and those helping man our table for helping Zion to be out there in the community!
Jesus tells His disciples that He will suffer, die, and rise the third day. That doesn’t sound like happy talk. But the things that happen to Him, happen for our sakes, to save us from sin and death and give us everlasting life. Don’t stop crying out, “Lord, have mercy!”
See you in the Divine Service!
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