Remember that you are dust. And to dust you shall return.
I loved worshiping with Restoration yesterday. 3 services at 6:30am, noon, and 7:30pm. I love getting to see people in the midst of their work day. I love starting the day in prayer and singing with Restoration peeps. Last night was a profound quiet and waiting on the Holy Spirit.
I told a story from a friend, Mark Buchanan. He writes about a millwright in a factory near his church. He was the best this factory had ever seen. He was unerring in his ability to hone in on the exact trouble spot in a machine, and then he was swift and sure in repairing it. The other employees notice that this man would always leave the lunchroom 10 minutes before everyone else. At first they thought he was going for a smoke, to check his email or something. But one day they followed him. What he found was the maintenance mechanic standing in the middle of the machine room, eyes closed, LISTENING. “In the silence, in the absence of workers working and talking, he could tune his ears to catch the most subtle pitch and timber, cadence and inflection of those machines, He could hear what was working well and what wasn’t. And he could locate the problem.”
Our lives swarm with noise and in the din there is no place for listening. We know there are problems. Things keep breaking down all the time, but we have no idea how to remedy it. Silence is for listening.
As you scrub off the ash, my prayer for Restoration is that you would create space during this Lent to listen. We are talking a lot about spiritual formation– yet, so much of it is just paying attention. As you give up chocolate or booze or TV, may you have space to listen– not just exercise discipline.
Show Me The Way by Henri Nouwen
During the season of Lent, our Discipleship Task Force has recommended that Restoration read a book together. On Ash Wednesday we handed out over 100 copies of Show Me The Way by Henri Nouwen. It contains readings, scripture, and prayers for every day of Lent. We will have more on Sunday. [interesting side note– you’ll notice that Amazon is now taking 7-10 days to ship the book, because we bought them all :)] Please take one and join us in this corporate discipline. If you would like to off-set the cost of the book, a donation of $10 is suggested, but definitely not required. We want everyone who will use it to take it.
And here’s 2 minutes on ash wednesday…
I am teaching a 3 week class in March [March 6,13,27]. In our tradition, if you were baptized as a baby, there comes a time when you need to stand in front of your community and say, this IS what I believe– to confirm your baptismal vows. There will be an opportunity to do this on April 22 (age high school and up). This class is required for confirmation. But the class is also a great reminder/intro to the Gospel, to Anglicanism. It’s a chance to get to know more of what we believe at Restoration. Everyone is invited to participate if they would like. The first week will be on Romans 5-8. The second week on Anglican history, polity, and current issues. The third week on the Eucharist. I love these conversations. If you want to participate, please email Becky to rsvp.