Ash Wednesday

Digital Lenten Retreat 2022 - v1.png

Each Wednesday in Lent, we invite you in to join us in hearing the stories of refugees and immigrants who have given up everything to find a better life. Especially the women and girls whose resiliency, strength, and power inspire us every day.

This week, we hear the story of Emillie. Through the change and the chaos, God embraced her and held her in the uncertainty coming her way. After hearing Emillie's story, we invite you to reflect upon scripture and pray - together or alone - the words written or what ever else might be weighing on your heart. 

As you are able, we invite you to gather each Wednesday for this time of retreat around a meal. Given the traditional Lenten focus on sacrifice, abstinence and plainness, Lenten suppers are simple, having foods like soup that are shared with a community, inviting others to share in the stories of Jesus Christ. Sample soup recipes can be found at the bottom of this page.


There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:  a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him. Whatever is has already been, and what will be has been before; and God will call the past to account. And I saw something else under the sun: In the place of judgment—wickedness was there, in the place of justice—wickedness was there. I said to myself, “God will bring into judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time to judge every deed.” I also said to myself, “As for humans, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals. Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath ; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless. All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return.   

(Ecclesiastes 3:1-20)  

REFLECT:

  • Emillie reflected on how fears can paralyze us, to the point of even not being able to cross a river. Are there fears you have in your life that do the same?
  • Remember that God is holding you through the good and the bad. When those fears take over, how can you ground and re-center yourself, both in small ways and big?

_________________________  

PRAYER:  

Heavenly God, 

You prepare our path. 

You have a time for everything – for pain but also for healing. 

For war and for peace. 

Your gracious love carries us through the hard times and holds us through the celebration.

This Lenten season, we ask you to hold us like you held Emillie through her journey to a new life. 

In our weekly reflections and times of meditation, hold us.

We ask this in your heavenly and gracious name, 

Amen. 

_________________________  

Recipes to Try:

Given the traditional Lenten focus on sacrifice, abstinence and plainness, Lenten suppers are simple, having foods like soup that are shared with a community, inviting others to share in the stories of Jesus Christ.


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