The Salem Tidings

From the Pastor’s Desk

 
 
 

 Note from Pastor Paola:

 

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Philippians 2:12-13  

 
February 22nd is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Lent journey that will end on Sunday, April 9th with the Easter celebration. My invitation to you all is to work on our spiritual growth this Lent. Some people believe spiritual growth is our job, our discipline, our commitment while others believe it is God’s job, the work of his love and Grace
 
Whose job is spiritual growth?
It is actually a joint project between us and God.
 
Our spiritual growth is empowered by God; it’s impossible without him. The sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit is powerful and mysterious. We can’t control or manufacture it. It’s not about us coming up with a program with predictable results we control. On the other hand, we’re not passive. Our job is to discern where the wind of the Spirit is blowing and know how to catch it. It is like sailing. When I’m sailing I am utterly dependent on the wind. Without the wind I don’t go anywhere. I don’t have any control over the
wind. Nevertheless, I’m not passive, I have a role to play – I hoist the sails and steer with the rudder. I have to catch the wind.
 
For this reason, Lent is a wonderful opportunity to take time to pay attention to the Wind, let the Wind work though us.
 
This Lent we will be sending a daily Lenten devotion email to you. Make room during the day to read it and reflect about it. Consider joining our Thursday night (6:30-7:30) ZOOM Bible Study. It is a wonderful group that studies the scripture and prays for each other. Participate in worship. This year the Lenten worship series is about the new life that comes out of grief and loss.
 
Take time to serve, be hospitable, open your heart to those in your life and in your community who are in need of your love, time, and care.
 
This is the part we play in our spiritual growth.
 
God’s intent is to sanctify you so you can love as God loves.
 
May God bless you,
Pastor Paola