Blog: “Dispatch from the Edge:” March 10, 2017 |  1st week of Lent

Blog Post Author

Anita Sorenson

March 10, 2017 | 1st week of Lent  

One of the things I appreciate about Lent is how it gives us the freedom to say "no." And what a beautiful, marvelous word that is. Anne Lamott nailed it when she reminded us that "no is a complete sentence." Some of us have trouble saying no, and we need to exercise this good muscle. The demands and expectations and possibilities in life are a tyranny sometimes, and in Lent I'm given permission to find a place where my appetite or my time management or my mind has run away with me - and I get to respond to God's invitation to pull it back in. I can say no to the person who wants me on that project, no to the late night Facebook rummaging that does nothing but kill brain cells, no to that opportunity that feels like such a heavy, righteous obligation - but "No! I'm sorry...I can't do that. It's Lent."
And in Lent, we say "no" to things together. We exercise our freedom together. We recognize in a tangible way that our faith can only be lived well in rhythm with other people who are also seeking to be faithful to God, who are also seeking to be true and whole, who are also remembering again that our hearts need to return to the center, to God. So maybe you're abstaining from sweets or alcohol, maybe you've chosen some other practice -- but in this, you're just joining up with the rest of us, getting in line and, with our bodies, moving toward grace. Together, we're moving toward mercy, waiting for resurrection. 
Almighty God, whose blessed Son was led by the Spirit to be tempted by Satan: Come quickly to help us who are assaulted by many temptations; and, as you know the weaknesses of each of us, let each one find you mighty to save; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen
Grace and Peace,
Anita Sorenson
Pastor for Spiritual Formation

*** Daylight Savings Time begins this weekend! Don’t forget to “SPRING FORWARD” this SUNDAY at 2am!

Keep these opportunities to gather together in mind over the next few weeks:

Lenten Focus: Neighborhood Listening
During Lent our all-church, inter-departmental emphasis will be on listening to our neighbors.
 • Feb. 26th thru April 15: Lenten disciplines:  Pair up with a friend to practice a weekly discipline of eating, shopping or walking in our immediate neighborhood. Pick up a devotional guide at the table in the gym, and commit to taking small steps to notice, meet, and listen to our neighbors. This week's action step: As you walk, shop or dine in our neighborhood, introduce yourself and learn the name of at least one new person.
 • 9 am Sundays, Feb. 26th thru April 9th: Journey to the Cross, photo edition! PasCov youth team up with kids' for photo scavenger hunts; bring a digital camera.
 • Neighborhood BBQ: Sat., April 22nd 10-2 pm: We will invite our neighbors to join us for a BBQ in the parking lot. We need lots of volunteers to help!
Sanctuary of Women: March 5 - April 16
Images of God in Scripture include feminine metaphors as a midwife, a woman in labor, and a breastfeeding mother. Join us for a prayerful, contemplative 7 week class (starting March 5 and culminating on Easter Sunday, April 16) in which we hope to center ourselves on these feminine metaphors and connect with Mother God in new ways. We will meet in the Corner House, starting promptly at 8:45am and ending at 10:15am. More information will follow soon, but please contact Brittany Burian (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address))  or Lisa Carruthers (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) with questions or if childcare is needed.
Connection Team Meeting: March 12th  
The Connection team will meet, Sunday, March 12, 9-10am in the Gathering Place, to help us prepare for Easter.
Potluck Luncheon with Steve Holloway: March 12th  
Come to the Salad Potluck in Fireside (gym building) after worship on Sunday, to hear an update on the Holloways’ ministry. Please bring a salad or dessert to share. For more information, please contact Bruce Wear (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address))
Family-Friendly Potluck: March 12th  
Family-Friendly Potluck will be on Sunday, March 12, 4pm at the Heuer’s home.
Urban Ministries Meeting: March 13th
Our Urban Ministries Team meets on Monday, March 13 at 6:45pm in the Santa Barbara Room. For more information, contact Vikki Randall .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).
Third Thursday Potluck: March 16th
The Third Thursday Potluck will be on Thursday, March 16th, 6pm at the Aoki's home.
The Nixon Group: March 17th
The Nixon Group will be on Friday, March 17th, 6pm at the Corner House.
Baked Potato Night: March 19th
Baked Potato Night will be on Sunday, March 19th, 5pm, at Field’s.
Women’s Book Club: March 28th  
We will meet Tuesday, March 28, from 7:30-9:00pm in the Corner House to discuss "Nightingale" by Kristin Hannah. Newcomers are always welcome. For more information, please contact Jennifer Mawhorter at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).
Upcoming Preacher Schedule:
March 12th – Ron Short
March 19th – Jim Tyberg