The wilderness

lanark greyfriars

Yesterday I was at Lanark Greyfriars leading worship. Despite a random powerpoint disaster – disaster is probably a bit strong, the pictures were fine but the music decided not to play – (you know the kind: works before service, doesn’t work in service, works fine after service) it was ok.

It was the first Sunday of Lent and the readings were about Jesus’ time in the wilderness where he was tempted by the devil.

I often wonder why people give stuff up for lent. I’m not a big fan of stopping things, and would even advocate you do something new or different for lent. But I guess the practice of giving up comes very much from Jesus’ 40 days in the barren wilderness with nothing to do but think. I said yesterday that the temptations Jesus faced were the kind of things we are all faced with and are often the things we let get in the way, between us and God. Power, glory hunting, self-reliance.

So maybe giving up something is a good idea, but I think I’m going to spend more time doing the things I find hard, reading the Bible and praying. Maybe that means some other things will go to make room for these but that’s ok. And I’m still eating chocolate!!!

8 thoughts on “The wilderness”

  1. I thought for a moment the title was a reference to the podcast section of the church website 😉
    I was chatting to someone last night who was trying to follow Tearfund’s carbon fast for lent. Again, the focus is less on giving up, more on doing something positive. I’d agree that the focus from the readings should be the temptations and what our equivalents are.

  2. Yeah, you’re right about the website! Nothing worse than an out of date website. I did get a copy of the service on cd as I left in a very efficient manner. So it’s not like there aren’t copies of the sermons… perhaps there are copyright issues??? Not that Bryan would ever find a sermon online… lol

  3. God forbid a minister would perhaps just have other work to do. Maybe you’d rather he spent all his time working and none with his family? Of course that is perhaps preferable to an out of date website?

  4. Or perhaps someone else could do it?

    Why does it have to be the minister that does the website? I’m sure there could be someone else who could do it. And if not then why have one? I’m not having a dig, just a gentle nudge. It would perhaps be better to take down the bits that aren’t or can’t be updated than to leave them there.

    My point is that when you put up a website it becomes a reflection of the thing it talks about. If it is static, out of date or never changes that is what people think the organisation it describes is like, whether that’s true or not. Have you never been frustrated by a website when you want up to date info and it’s just not there?

  5. I echo what Stewart says. No-one’s suggesting it needs to be the minister doing these things. They’re great ideas, but perfect for giving over to someone else as a learning opportunity and for taking responsibility for making it happen.
    And, to turn it around, I don’t really appreciate spending time (which I could be using for family, say) putting website facilities in place that are a novelty for a couple of weeks then ignored. Don’t get me wrong – I’m happy to help with the website. But I’d prefer to give my time for something that’s not just a novelty.

  6. Perhaps if you’re both so irritated with something though you should actually put your comments directly to the person you have the issue with rather than bad mouthing them on a public blog (which incidentally the person you have an issue with doesn’t read and this person will be joining them in that).

  7. I have. Often. It would be a shame if you felt unable to read anymore Pauline. I think if you read back through the comments made you will find that they started with tongue firmly in cheek (lots of (;) and LOLs). No one is being bad mouthed, especially not someone who I’m sure we both consider to be a very good friend.

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