Conflict transformed


They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. -Isaiah 2:4

Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, March 5 and concludes with Easter, April 20. Lent comes from a word that means “to lengthen,” referring to the lengthening of daylight hours as spring approaches in the northern hemisphere.

Lent, which lasts 40 days,  is associated with the 40 days Moses spent on Mount Sinai, Israel’s 40 years wandering in the wilderness, and Jesus’ 40-day fast in the desert.

For those fact checkers out there, you might notice that there are more than 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter. That’s because Sundays are not included in this 40 day Lent calculation. Sundays, interestingly, are considered “little Easters.”

There are many other things to highlight and consider about the season of Lent. That is why I will lead an Introduction to Lent Adult Education session in the Sanctuary this coming Sunday, March 2. We will hear more about the purpose and rhythms of Lent, learn some Lenten songs and hear more about our Lenten theme: Conflict Transformed.

plaqueRegarding the theme, some of you might notice that the sketch at the top is based on a piece by RMC artist and builder, Arlie Regier. I’m grateful to Leroy and June Seat (pictured below) who informed me of this piece (or should I say peace?). They recently brought me to the Clay County Court House where this sculpture sits permanently. Since there was no way to move this sculpture to our sanctuary I asked my husband Jesse to sketch it.

June and LeroyAs we approach this new season of lengthening days, may our hearts and minds also be stretched or lengthened as we consider how Jesus transforms conflict and how we might live in that Love.

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