february 2015 fvumc wellspring

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    The WellspringFuquay-Varina United Methodist Church

    February 2015

    Ash WednesdaySoup Supper 5:45-6:45pm

    Worship 7:00pmPlease drop off crockpots of soup (any type) by 5:30 pm in the main kitchen. Donations of crackers, spoons and napkins appreciated. For questions, contact Terri Pavone at [email protected] Online signups will begin in early February - watch the bulletin for more details.

    Observing a Holy LentPastor Gene Tyson

    Lent marks the beginning of the churchs journey toward Easter. It is a season of 40 days, not counting Sundays, which begins with Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday.

    It is a time of preparation before celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Our Ash Wednesday liturgy tells the story:

    Brothers and sisters in Christ: the early Christians observed with great devotion the days of our Lords passion and resurrection, and it became the custom of the Church that before the Easter celebration there should be a forty day season of spiritual preparation.

    I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church to observe a holy Lent: by self-examination and repentance: by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on Gods Word.

    Lenten Worship: Noon RespiteThis year, our Lenten worship services are going to look a little different. Instead of our usual worship with guest pastors sharing a message, we are worshiping simply through a prayer and communion service each Wednesday at noon in the Centrum.

    On one Wednesday, we will pray using a psalm, on another we will slowly study a gospel reading together through the ancient practice of lectio divina. Each week will be a great opportunity to be drawn closer into Gods presence during our 40 day Lenten journey.

    You are welcome to join us on your lunch break, and we hope this will be a true respite in your week. All are welcome to join in the sacrament of communion each week as we gather together. Worship will be followed with a light lunch at 12:30pm. Come any Wednesday that you are able, and bring a friend or co-worker.

    February 25March 4March 11

    March 18March 25

  • Lent is a time when we, as followers of Christ, focus on what God has done for us through the passion, death and resurrection of his Son and our Savior Jesus Christ.

    The death of Jesus paid for the sins of the world past, present and future, and his resurrection ensures new life for all and the promised coming of His Kingdom.

    It is indeed Calvary Love for which he gave his life.

    In his book Simply Jesus: A New Vision of Who He Was, What He Did And Why It Matters, N.T. Wright says, The crucifixion was the shocking answer to the prayer that Gods Kingdom would come on earth as in heaven.

    Therefore sisters and brothers of all ages, as residing Elder and Lead Pastor at FVUMC, I invite you to observe a holy Lent of 40 days beginning Ash Wednesday, February 18 through Holy Saturday April 4.

    Observe by self-examination and repentance: by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on Gods Word.

    On Ash Wednesday, we will gather from 5:45-6:45pm for a soup supper followed by our child-friendly Ash Wednesday service at 7:00pm.

    Then, join us for our weekly noonday services on Wednesdays and take part in serve & share opportunities throughout our community as we walk through this season together.

    God bless each of you as enter into these 40 days, and I look forward to seeing you and your family on Ash Wednesday.

    Pastor Gene

    Practice, Practice, Practice: Lent 2015Pastor Kevin Johnson

    Following Jesus takes practice.

    While we know that to be true, we often arent very good at thinking about practices besides reading the Bible and praying.

    So this Lent, we are going to focus as a church family on a different practice that we can do for each week of Lent. These will be things you can engage in with your family or by yourself. We will provide different ideas for how you might practice following Jesus in different ways during Lent. What type of practices? Heres an example:

    S i l e nc e .

    We are a noise-filled culture.

    Even while I write this, I am playing music in the background to drown out other conversations around me.

    So what would it look like if we didnt turn any music on in the car? What if instead of flipping the TV on once the kids are in bed, we practiced silence and listened to God?

    Maybe your family could even try a silent dinner and see what you notice differently when you take out the noise.

    As we engage in these practices, our hope is that we get in the habit of following closely after Jesus.

    After all, Jesus needed these practices in his life. Thats why he went up on mountainsides to pray, or took his disciples to the other side of the lake.

    What could happen if we encounter God in these spiritual practices during Lent?

    Look for our weekly email after Ash Wednesday for the first practice that we will do together!

    Pastor Kevin

    O b s e r v e a H O l y l e n t :

    by s e l f -

    e x ami n a t ion

    & r e p e nt anc e :

    by p raye r ,

    f a s t i ng , an d

    s e l f - d e n i a l ;

    by r e a d i ng a n d

    me d i t a t i ng

    o n G o d s Word

    Observing a Holy Lent from page 1

    2

  • Surrendering to That Holy NudgingPastor Valerie Tyson

    Grace and Peace! Our Bishop, Hope Morgan Ward, is currently visiting each of the eight districts in the North Carolina Conference. Pastors Kevin and Laura, Gene and I recently joined our brothers and sisters for the Fairway District meeting which convened at White Plains UMC in Cary.

    Bishop Ward likes to share stories. Shes good at it too. Her stories are meaningful and memorable because they are real. She interprets her everyday life experiences in the light of faith and passes them along to encourage, inspire and transform us.

    During the meeting, she brought to our attention the first issue of a new magazine that is being published quarterly entitled Every Day Grace.

    Every Day Grace offers short stories from people just like us who are in the local church. These real stories are wonderfully written and are transparent, exposing warts and all!

    And sooooo.I thought I might share a little story myself and entrust to you a truth about my life.

    Here goes: My prayer life has been in the tank!

    There it is! Not a pretty confession for anyone, certainly not a pastor! But, its the truth. I must confess my lack of a truly disciplined prayer life has troubled me for a while. (Isnt that called grace?) Our gracious God, by grace, has been causing a holy disturbance in me for missing out on this means of grace we have been given called prayer!

    About a month ago, I made a decision. Prayer was going to become a priority. Come hades or high water, I determined that every day (except Sunday) I would spend some disciplined time in prayer with the help of God. Its been a battle, but I am happy to report I am well on my way to getting my prayer life under control.

    Although it has only been a matter of a few weeks, I can already tell a HUGE difference in my life. I am much more at peace and much better equipped for the day. But the best part is the fellowship with God. This morning, I was trying to find some words to

    describe to God how I felt about our time together. Its like beautiful pearls, but much better. Its like a treasure hidden in a field, but much greater. I found that I couldnt even find the words. Our time together is so, so rich and good and fruitful.

    Is there a place in your life that you sense God is causing a holy disturbance? What do I mean by that? Is there a feeling inside that is unsettled? Is there a place where you are wrestling about something? Are you not at peace about situation? Is God calling you to a holy response?

    For me, it has been about my prayer life. With the help of God, I am surrendering to that holy nudging!

    Thats my story.warts and all! As the Season of Lent approaches, maybe this is a good time to pay special attention to the holy disturbance in you. Invite God to help you discern what that is and what your response should be. Give it shot. What kind of story do you have to tell?

    Blessings! Pastor Valerie

    Copies of Every Day Grace magazine are available in the information display by the Welcome Center. You can email [email protected] for subscription information. Currently, the subscriptions are free. An Every Day Grace television program is also being produced and is avilable on YouTube and WNCN. More information is available at nccumc.org/news/2014/10/every-day-grace-tv-coming-fall/

    O Lord, Thou hast searched me and known me. Thou dost know when I sit down and when I rise up; Thou dost understand my thought from afar.

    Psalm 139: 1-2

    3

  • Believing God: Womens Bible Study

    A 10-week womens Bible study, Believing God by Beth Moore, is being offered on Thursday mornings at 10:30am in Room 117/119.

    Originating from a concept in Isaiah 43:10, Believing God examines what it means to believe God rather than only believe in Him. Participants study the lives of Abraham, Moses and others from Hebrews 11 as examples of people who believed God. This study parallels a personal journey Beth took in coming to understand what it means to believe God.

    Please contact Annette Ragan to sign up at 919-285-6343 or [email protected]

    12 Extraordinary Women: Friday Morning Study

    They were ordinary, common, and in some cases shockingly low-caste, yet each was made extraordinary by her life-changing encounter with God. Readers will be challenged and motivated