Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Lent: Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Old Testament Lesson

Exodus 7:8-24

Notice in this passage we see Pharaoh harden his heart, or have his heart remain hard. In a few passages later we'll see that passage where it says that the Lord hardened his heart.  Before the Lord hardened his heart, Pharaoh first began the process of hardening it himself. And we see that in this passage, Pharaoh sees the works of the Lord, sees what the Lord is doing, and rejects it. 

Perhaps the hardening of the heart was not even on purpose. Perhaps it was just a rejection of what God was doing and wanting to do. I don't think that many of us would say, "sure, I want my heart to be hardened."  But I think that if we are not very careful, when we reject what God is trying to do our live, in the life of our church, in the life of our community, in the life of the world, we greatly run that risk.  

New Testament Lesson

2 Corinthians 2:14-3:6

Paul here says we are the aroma of Christ. I love that image.  On the third Sunday of every month, when we have our men's breakfast (by the way, that is this week, guys!) when I walk into our CMC building, the first thing I experience is the smell of bacon cooking, sausage, and all the other great smells of the breakfast table.  Your mouth starts watering just thinking about it. 

That is how we are supposed to be. When folks are around us, that sweet "smell" or presence of Christ should be all over us. And just as when I smell that bacon cooking, I can't wait to eat, so should it be that when folks are around us, they can't wait to meet and experience that Jesus that has so transformed our lives. We are the aroma of Christ.  What a blessing.  

Gospel Lesson

Mark 10:1-16

Everyday when my children see me, they want to run and jump into my arms. This is not because I'm an exceptional father.  There many, many ways that I could and should improve as a father. This is simply because they love their dad. 

Do we as the children of have the same joy, same excitement, same passion for the embrace of our Father as my children have for me?  I think part of what we lose as we grow older is that childlike excitement just seeing your parents after a day of school or daycare. Perhaps what it means to come to God as child is to simple eagerly desire to be in His presence as a child longs to be in the presence of their parent.  

May we have that desire today. 

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