Archive for March 2011

Lent: Living the Questions

March 10, 2011

Lent is a season of devotion and discipline. It is a season of awakening our hearts to God’s presence in our lives; it is a season of recommitting our whole hearts to journey with Christ in all we do. Lent is a season of intentional contemplation, of listening for God’s voice and vision for where God is leading us, and part of that intention, devotion, discipline, and recommitment to a vibrant, relevant and transformational faith and relationship with God is asking ourselves and the church those hard, uncomfortable, touchy questions that cause us to wrestle with our faith and God; it is in questioning and seeking that we grow closer to God and one another.

During Lent Wesley Memorial UMC is taking up the challenge to ask those difficult questions and wants to encourage you to ask any and all of those questions you’ve always wanted to ask at church but never have. In the Gospels when Jesus teaches about perseverance in prayer he says, “I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find;  knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” Likewise, the church should be a place that encourages asking, seeking and knocking. Wesley Memorial wants to be a place that truly embodies “Open Heats, Open Minds, Open Doors.” We invite you to question with us during this year’s journey through Lent, and we hope that asking, seeking and knocking will not be bound to just the forty-day Lenten journey, but will continue for a lifetime.

Wesley Memorial’s Lenten challenge to question is inspired by RethinkChurch’s Lenten study “Fearless: The Courage to Question.” Our Lenten challenge, however, is “Living the Questions” because we want to encourage conversation centered on the questions our members and you submit. As good Methodists our conversation will draw upon the Wesleyan quadrilateral, using Scripture, reason, tradition and experience to inform our answers. We really want to encourage different voices to bring personal experience into the conversation–that truly makes it “living the questions.” We all come from different backgrounds and varying embedded theologies, but we want to encourage folks to make this a holy conversation where we listen to one another in respect and love, knowing that we might not agree, but also knowing that opening our hearts to such a conversation might challenge us to change and take up new viewpoints. We pray that living the questions in conversation with one another and in your own devotion time will inspire a fresh, dynamic relationship with God and the church that will awaken you to God’s living and active presence in our world.

So, bring on the questions!