The Christian Life doesn’t just happen; it has to be learned. Becoming like Christ can become second nature, but only through lots and lots of practice. In his grace, God the Father gives his children certain exercises they can do in which the Holy Spirit works to shape them more into the likeness of Christ. These exercises are called spiritual disciplines, and they are essential to experiencing and participating in the life of God. This Lenten season each Pastorate (small group) will focus on a particular spiritual discipline that you’ll be able to practice and share with others. You can sign up on Sundays or by contacting the church office.
DWELLING ON THE GOOD: MEDITATION AS A SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE
Fr. Brian Larsen Wells and Jennifer Gruenke
At the home of the Huelins
Spiritual meditation, as we will endeavor to practice it, includes the conscious attempt to dwell upon the good, God’s law, the beautiful, and the true. It is a counter- cultural practice, one that requires stillness in an age of hyperactivity. Through such meditation, we redirect our thoughts away from the doubt and ill ease of the day toward the goodness and blessing of the Lord, resting in the simple knowledge of his presence and provision. Join us as together we practice this vital discipline, observing how it can change us over time and foster within us a greater sense of the Lord’s peace.
Fr. Wes Gristy
At the home of Len Diffee and Terry Blakley
Fasting seems out of place in our three-meals-a-day, super-sized world, and yet both Scripture and church history are replete with people who made fasting a regular part of their lives with God, including Jesus himself. In this Pastorate, we’ll not only explore the purpose and logistics of fasting, we’ll practice together different types of fasting with the hope of making it a more habitual part of our lives, perhaps even a lifestyle.
SOLITUDE AND SILENCE: SITTING AT THE FEET OF JESUS
At the home of the Wagners
In Luke 10, Jesus invites Martha to sit at his feet because that is the one thing that is needed. Silence and Solitude are not about unburdening ourselves from our busy and overscheduled lives (although that can be a nice benefit). They offer us the opportunity to sit in the presence of God, to learn from him, and to come to know more deeply that we are loved by him. One fruit of solitude is compassion for others because we are more confident of God’s love for us. During these four gatherings we will deepen our understanding and our practice of solitude and silence.
THE SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE OF STUDY
Dr. Jeff Wilcox
At the home of the Jordans
The spiritual discipline of study is central to gaining wisdom. Indeed, Scripture virtually teems with the call to seek wisdom by entering more deeply into the study of God’s revelation of himself to us. While the most obvious source of this wisdom is found in Scripture itself, wisdom is also found in the beauty and order of God’s creation, in the words of those who have come before us, and in the traditions of the Church. In this Pastorate we will be looking both at how the discipline of study is a spiritual act and at a number of sources that assist us in making the discipline of study a path to wisdom.
SUNDAY LENTEN PASTORATES
PRACTICING THE PRESENCE OF GOD AS A FAMILY
Dcn. Ross Guthrie
Begins Sunday, February 21, 4:00 pm
At the home of the Stewarts
As families, we are all striving to live life in Jesus together. Family life can and should be the primary way we mature and grow in Christ. However, does the work of parenting sometimes overwhelm the joy of parenting? Are you frustrated in trying to develop the spiritual lives of your children and your own life in Christ as well? Let’s learn to practice the presence of God together as we learn about and practice various spiritual disciplines for our families.
CONNECTING WITH THE DIVINE: ANGLICAN PRAYER BEADS
Dr. Gary Osborne
Begins Sunay, February 21, 6:00 pm
At the home of the Warmbrods
Struggling with prayer? Do you feel awkward at times with the wording? Questioning your prayer life? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then you fit the norm of most Christians. Even the twelve apostles of Jesus were uncertain about prayer and asked him how to pray. Hoping to enhance your prayer life will be the goal of this Pastorate. The means of further prayer development will be through the active use of Anglican Prayer Beads. The beads are not the end; they are the means to an end, which ultimately is communion with God.