LENT 2021 – Suffer and Grow Strong
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.
The theme we have chosen for this season is “Suffer and Grow Strong.” None of us is a stranger to suffering, and none of us is immune to it. And especially after the last year we have all been through, it would be fairly accurate to say we have all suffered, in one way or another. And while none of us would willingly choose to suffer because of the inherent hardship and pain associated with suffering, we do not have to become victims of it. We can actually grow strong, and thrive because of what we have been through and endured.
LENTEN WORSHIP SERIES
Suffer and Grow Strong Worship Series
Sundays in Lent, 11:15 am, In-person & Online
Have you ever found yourself suffering and wondered, “Can any good come from this?” The life of Jesus answers the question with a resounding “Yes!” During our 40-day journey through Lent, we will walk with Jesus and discover that not only can we live through days of suffering but we also can grow stronger.
Feb 21 . Overcoming Temptation
Feb 28 . When Your Words Get You in Trouble
Mar 7 . Never the Wrong Time to Do Right
Mar 14 . No Greater Love
Mar 21 . Draw the Circle Wider
Mar 28 . Willing to Enter the Arena
One of the most effective ways to live fully and intentionally into this season is to draw on the spiritual disciplines/practices that have been a part of the Christian tradition for centuries. These practices have help to mold and shape the lives of the saints before us, and of so many great men and women of our time. When rightly engaged, spiritual disciplines such as prayer, fasting, meditation, studying Scripture, simplicity, confession, worship and more will transform our lives, making us better persons and more committed followers of Jesus Christian.
Over the next six weeks, we will be sharing writings from different clergy members on the theme of “Suffer and Grow Strong.” You will be encouraged to let go – to let of habits that limit or hinder your spiritual growth and wellbeing. You will be invited to immerse yourself into the practice of the faith – to go deeper and farther in living faithfully as believers. You will be challenged to take on new habits – practices that are life giving and transforming on your faith journey. You will be inspired to grow – to grow strong and thrive as an overcomers and followers of Jesus Christ.
Daily Lenten devotions by PRUMC clergy will be available on our website here and via email subscription starting Ash Wednesday February 17. If you are not yet subscribed to our daily prayer email list, you may do so here.
The Family That Prays Together Grows Together
Starting February 17, 2021
We usually observe Lent as a time to consider and renew our faith practices, and recommit to surrender ourselves to the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. During the 40 days, many persons choose to give up a habit, or way of being that they have struggled with, while others chose to take on a daily practice they consider spiritually wholesome. Some persons do both – give up a habit and take on a wholesome spiritual practice.
For this Lent, we would like to invite our congregation to take on the spiritual practice of prayer – praying for, and with each other. The aim is to have each family/household in our congregation pray for 7 different families/households – 1 each day, for the entire season of Lent. This will result in every family/household praying for 7, and being prayed for by 7, every week.
On Monday, February 15, each household will receive an email with the names of people for whom they are praying. We hope you will join us on this journey.
THE SEASON OF SERVICE
This year we are expanding our annual Great Day of Service into an entire season of service. We are excited to offer new and reimagined outreach opportunities for all ages and abilities throughout Lent. In a million small ways, we continue to make a big impact on our community when we come together in service. Join us once again to serve others as the body of Christ in a renewed and relevant way.
We have 36 projects throughout the 6 weeks of Lent. Our hope is to move from a day of service, to a season… to a lifetime of service. Join us!
THE 10 DAY CHALLENGE: CHRISTIANS FOR RACIAL UNITY
Who Do We Choose to Be?
Almost two years ago we launched our hospitality initiative to be a church that is radically welcoming to persons of color. This initiative was a result of our desire to live out the gospel, and to be faithful to Jesus Christ, our Lord. From the start, some of our members committed to serve as a team, “Christians for Racial Unity,” to help identify and recommend ways we we can work to become such a congregation. They knew one of the ways that would help us on this journey is for the congregation to be exposed to, and study, resources and materials by persons of color and that are specific to race relations.
As such, we have been working over the last year to compile and curate a list books, songs, articles, movies, dialogues, and more to offer the congregation a place to begin. The team had been presenting its work and progress to the Administrative Board, the leadership body of the church, so the members could keep abreast with the work that was being done.
February 17 begins the Season of Lent, and our theme for Lent is “Suffer and Grow Strong.” February is also Black History Month, in which the work and legacy of blacks in America are recognized. Beginning Ash Wednesday, we will start the first of our three 10 Day Challenge, where we invite and challenge our members to read an article or and excerpt from a book, listen to a dialogue or a discussion, or watch a movie or short clip by a person or color or on race relations. The link will be on the church’s website, with the resources for each day, for the 10 days.
We invite you to take the challenge. Engage the resources provided. Do not be disheartened if you miss a day. Pick up where you left off and continue the journey. Invite your family to take the challenge with you. Invite a friend. Invite the people in your circle.
This is an opportunity that can help us to choose to become the congregation that welcomes the stranger who does not look like us. It is one that enables us to choose to be followers of Jesus Christ who show and reflect the love of God to our brothers and sisters in Christ.
Journey well. And God be with you every step of the way, each day.
THE LENTEN OFFERING
Last year at the beginning of the pandemic, your compassion overwhelmed us. You gave so generously during Lent we were able to offer critical financial support to our partners on the front lines. As we see hope on the horizon, we must continue to advocate for our most vulnerable population – the homeless and working poor. We need your financial support again this year – please give as you are able.
Your generosity makes a difference in the lives of others, and it makes a difference in our lives too. As our community partners create real change for people in crisis, they create opportunities for us to grow in our faith. Together we all are part of a better Atlanta.