The Lenten season has been observed throughout the church's history. It starts with Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of 40 days (minus Sundays) leading up to the crucifixion of Jesus. Lent is a season of preparation and anticipation. It is a time to reflect on the brokenness of our world and a time to repent for the brokenness in our lives. It is also a time to look ahead to the resurrection and the day when all things will be made new!
Lent is a season of fasting - giving up food, luxuries, vices, or even some of our time - to experience more of God’s love. It is also a season of repentance, which means to re-think things. It is a time to reflect on the fleeting nature of life and to consider what is really driving our lives.
We have a lot of great things planned to help us experience more of God’s loving presence in our lives and within our church during this Lenten season.
Ash Wednesday Service
Wednesday, March 5 at 7pm
Central Campus Auditorium
New Sermon Series | Ancient Happiness
This Lenten season we’ll be exploring the book of Psalms - one of the most famous and ancient texts in the world - because what the Bible has always said is what makes you happy or unhappy is profoundly spiritual, and has been unchanged for since the beginning of time.
You're invited to join the #LentChallenge with Christians around the globe as we read the entire New Testament during Lent 2014.
Holy Week Activity Guide
Easter is not just something we learn, it is something we experience. This year we’ll be sharing an interactive guide for your family and/or small group. Each day there is an activity and response you can do with your family or group to retell the story of the last week of Jesus’s life.
Baptism | Easter Sunday
Sunday, April 20 at 10am
Baptism connects us to Good Friday and to Easter in a powerful way. If you have been baptized, Christ’s death is your death, and Christ’s resurrection is your resurrection (Rom 6v3-5). If you have not yet been baptized, Easter Sunday will be a tremendous opportunity to join in!
Eggs Eggs Everywhere
Saturday, April 19 from 9am - 12pm
Easter is the church’s biggest celebration. Jesus is risen and all things are being made new! This is the good news that we want to share with our city. We can do that through ministry to the homeless, the widow and the orphan - and we can do that by organizing a massive, free Easter Egg Hunt in the heart of our city! This is our biggest volunteer event of the year and we’ll need everyone’s help.
Lent is an important season in the historical church calendar. Every society creates its own calendar according to its own values. Western civilization has used the Julian and Gregorian calendars, which are influenced largely by the Roman Empire’s traditions (“August” referring to Caesar Augustus and “January” referring to the god Janus, etc.). The United States mixes in its own set of holy days, most notably its date of inception (July 4) and its remembrances of military sacrifice (Memorial Day and Veterans Day). Consumer culture often co-opts these and other holidays and turns them into little more than opportunities to buy more stuff.
But if we in the church are going to take our citizenship in heaven seriously, we must re-shape our minds by marking our calendars differently. As a whole the traditions within the historic church calendar are tools that can help us organize our lives around a holistic participation in God’s story. In many ways these seasons are like the feasts and monuments God gave to ancient Israel to help them remember who God is and to participate in the story He was telling through them. The point is to keep God’s story at the center of our lives and calendar.