February 16, 2024

Marvelous, Wonderful, Amazing Grace

by David Alexander

Dear First Family, 
At our Ash Wednesday service earlier this week, I shared what I described as a simple prayer that is overflowing with profound spiritual prayer. 
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. 
What today is known as The Jesus Prayer is thought to have been written around the 4th or 5th century. In ruins located in the Egyptian desert, the words of this simple prayer were inscribed. For hundreds of years, Christians of all traditions have lifted this heartfelt petition. 
Invoking the name of Jesus, calling out to him as Lord and acknowledging before God that we know who we really are – finite and frail, broken and imperfect, rebellious and often driven by fear rather than our faith. 
It’s an echo of what’s at the heart of Ash Wednesday… the reminder that “from dust we came and to dust we will return.” And yet, the scriptures are continually inviting us in our fragile existence to cry out to the one who is holy and infinite, constant and true, abounding in grace, and steadfast in love.

We bow before our God in humble contrition and, in Christ, we stand on these promises building our lives on this firm foundation.  
What marvelous, wonderful, amazing grace is ours.
This is the faith first lived in others that has now been deposited in us and we are now called to invest in others. 

I hope you will be in worship this weekend at one of our three services as we continue asking God to challenge us to live in such a way that this beautiful inheritance that is ours will be a gift others receive for a thousand generations to come. 
I love you and I am proud of you, 
Pastor David

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